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Full text of "The work of the Afro-American woman"

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THE WORK 



OF THE 



AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN 



BY 



MRS. N. F. MOSSELL 



PHILADELPHIA 

GEO. S. FERGUSON COMPANY 
1894 



COPYRIGHT BY 

MRS. N. F. MOSSELL. 



INTRODUCTION. 

It is worthy of note as well as of congratulation 
that colored women are making great advancement in 
literary ventures. 

In the year 1892 three books were given the world 
by this class of writers, well worthy of high consid- 
eration : Mrs. A. J. Cooper, "A Voice from the South 
by a Black Woman of the South ; " Mrs. F. E. W. 
Harper, " Iola; or, Shadows Uplifted ; " and Mrs. W. A. 
Dove, " The Life and Sermons of Rev. W. A. Dove." 

Mrs. Mossell has continued this interesting list with 
The Work of the Afro-American Woman. When 
the women of any race become intelligent and active 
in literary pursuits, that race has acquired the greatest 
guarantee of success. This book will not only have 
that influence upon the world which comes from the 
consideration mentioned above, but, being thought- 
fully prepared with a view to impressing a growing 
race with the importance of a correct life and inde- 
pendent thought, it must add largely to the educative 
cause of that race. 

Mrs. Mossell has had large experience in the school 
room and in writing for the public press ; hence has 
dealt largely with popular questions and studied 
closely the subjects treated in this book. 

Benjamin F. Lee, D. D., 

Bishop of the A. M. E. Church'. 
(3) 



DEDICATION. 

To my two little daughters, Mary Campbell 
and Florence Alma Moss ell, praying that they 
may grow into a pure and noble womanhood, 
this little volume is lovingly dedicated. 
4 



PREFACE. 

T N the belief that some note of inspiration might be 
X found in these writings for the budding woman- 
hood of the race, they have been gathered and placed 
before it in this form. The author thanks her many 
readers for the kindly reception given her occasional 
work in the past, and bespeaks for this little volume 
the same generous reception in the present. She 
also desires to express her gratitude for helpful sug- 
gestions (in the preparation of this little book) from 
Mrs. F. E. W. Harper, Mrs. Bishop B. F. Lee, Miss 
Frazelia Campbell, T. Thomas Fortune, and Dr. N. 
F. Mossell. The author would be grateful to her 
readers if, by personal communication, they would 
make any correction or suggestion looking toward a 
more extended and revised edition of this work in 
the near future. Address 

1432 Lombard Street, 

Philadelphia. 



"To hold one's self in harmony with one's race while working out 
one's personal gift with freedom and conviction is to combine the 
highest results of inheritance and personal endeavor." 

■* * * * * * * 

" The chief significance of this work is that it preserves for all 
time a chapter of humanity." 
6 



CONTENTS. 



PAGE 

The Work of the Afro-American Woman, . 9 

A Sketch of Afro-American Literature, . . 48 

The Afro-American Woman in Verse, . . 6j 

Our Women in Journalism, 98 

Our Afro-American Representatives at the 

World's Fair, . . . . .104 

The Opposite Point of View, . . . .115 

A Lofty Study, . „ . . . .126 

Caste in Universities, „ . . „ 130 
Verse : 

Two Questions, . . - . 149 

Love's Promptings, . . . . 149 

Good Night, . . . . . o 150 

Life, . . . . „ . „ Q 151 

My Babes that Never Grow Old, . c 152 

Earth's Sorrows, „ „ „ . .154 

Query and Answer, „ . . „ 155 

(7) 



C( >NTENTS. 



3E — Continued: 


PAGE 


Words, ....... 


157 


Tell the North that We are Rising, . 


160 


The Martyrs of To-day, .... 


162 


A Greeting Song to Our Brothers in Africa, 


164 


Child of the Southland, .... 


165 


Why Baby was Named Chris, . 


166 


Only, . 


167 


Beautiful Things, ..... 


168 


Three Hours, ...... 


I/O 


The Story of a Life, . 


173 




THE WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

" The value of any published work, especially if 
historical in character, must be largely inspirational ; 
this fact grows out of the truth that race instinct, race 
experience lies behind it, national feeling, or race pride 
always having for its development a basis of self- 
respect." The emancipation of the Negro race came 
about at the entrance to that which has been aptly 
termed the Woman's Century; co-education, higher 
education for women, had each gained a foothold. 
The " Woman's Suffrage " movement had passed the 
era of ridicule and entered upon that of critical study. 
The Woman's Christian Temperance Union had be- 
come a strong factor in the reform work of the nation. 
These facts made the uplifting of the womanhood of 
this race a more hopeful task than might otherwise 
have been, and gave to the individual woman of the 
race opportunities to reach a higher plane of develop- 
ment with less effort than would have been possible 
under a more unfavorable aspect of the woman ques- 
tion. Trammelled by their past condition and its 
consequent poverty, combined with the blasting influ- 

(9) 



10 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

ence of caste prejudice, they have yet made a fair 
showing. 

The men of the race, in most instances, have been 
generous, doing all in their power to allow the women 
of the race to rise with them. " Woman's Work in 
America," by Anna Nathan Myer, garners up the 
grain from the harvest field of labor of our Anglo- 
American sisters. I would do for the women of my 
race, in a few words, this work that has been so ably 
done for our more favored sisters by another and abler 
pen. Accepting largely the divisions laid down in 
the above-mentioned volume, we have, along the line 
of successful educational work in the North, that most 
successful teacher and eloquent lecturer, Mrs. Fanny 
J. Coppin, principal of the Institute for Colored Youth 
at Philadelphia. Mrs. Coppin, one of the early gradu- 
ates of Oberlin College, developed into one of the 
most noted educators in the United States. Hundreds 
of her graduates have rilled positions of honor; hun- 
dreds of them are laboring as teachers for the up- 
building of their race. The grand work of establish- 
ing an Industrial School in connection with the In- 
stitute did not satisfy the heart of this noble benefac- 
tress of her race, but she at once set about establishing 
a boarding home for pupils from a distance. The 
effort is prospering and will no doubt be an assured 
fact in the near future. This lady is a very busy 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 11 

worker in various fields scores of needy students have 
been assisted by her own open-handed charity, as well 
as by the interest secured through her in their behalf. 
Her home is one of unostentatious hospitality. Mrs. 
Coppin is the wife of Rev. Levi Coppin, D. D., editor 
of the A. M. E. Review. 

Miss Julia Jones, Miss Lottie Bassett, and Miss 
Frazelia Campbell, of the same institution, Caroline 
R. Le Count of the O. V. Catto School, of Philadelphia, 
Mrs. S. S. Garnet, principal of Grammar School 8i, 
17th street, New York City, Edwina Kruse, principal 
of the Howard School, Wilmington, Del., are able 
educators. In the East, we have Miss Maria Baldwin, 
principal of the Agassiz School, Cambridgeport, Mass. 
In the South, we have Mrs. Anna J. Cooper, of the 
High School, Washington, D. C, Prof. Mary V. Cook, 
Miss Bessie Cook, of Howard University, Miss Lucy 
Moten, principal of the Normal School of Washington, 
who was one of the honorary vice-presidents of the 
World's Educational Conference at the World's Fair, 
and Miss Mary Patterson ; passing farther southward, 
Miss Lucy Laney, of the Haynes Industrial School at 
Augusta, Ga., Miss Alice Dugged Cary, and scores of 
others, who are doing good work. Mrs. Wm. Weaver, 
who with her husband is laboring against great odds 
in the upbuilding of the Gloucester Industrial School, 
Va., deserves honorable mention. In the West, we 



12 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

have successful teachers giving instruction to our own 
race ; we have also several Afro-American women 
elected to teacherships in the white schools of Cleve- 
land, placed there as one must readily see by un- 
questioned merit. Miss Jennie Enola Wise, of the 
State Normal School, Alabama, now Mrs. Dr. H. T. 
Johnson, wife of the editor of The Christian Re- 
corder, Miss Anna Jones, of YVilberforce, Miss 
lone Wood and Miss Lucy Wilmot Smith, of the 
Kentucky State Normal School, have all labored suc- 
cessfully at their chosen profession. Among eminent 
educators who have retired from active work in this 
field of effort we would mention Miss Pet Kiger, now 
Mrs. Isaiah Wears, Mrs. Silone Yates, formerly of Lin- 
coln Institute, Mrs. Cordelia Atwell, Mrs. Susie 
Shorter, Mrs. Dr. Alston of Asheville, N. C, formerly 
of Shaw University, Mrs. Sarah Early, of Wilberforce 
University, Mrs. Wm. D. Cook, formerly Miss Bertha 
Wolf, of Allen University. Miss Florence Cozzen and 
Miss Fanny Somerville of Philadelphia are successful 
kindergartners. Very many of the higher grade in- 
stitutions for the education of Afro-American students 
North, South, East and West employ in their corps of 
teachers women of the race who are doing able work 
on the basis of education received in the High and 
Normal Schools of the various States. Our girls are 
yearly entering the collegiate institutions of the land. 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 13 

We can boast of Ella Smith, of Newport, an M. A. of 
Wellesley. Anna J. Cooper, Fanny J. Coppin and 
Mary Church Terril, of Oberlin. Wilberforce, Atlanta, 
Fisk, Howard, Scotia, Shaw, Tuskegee, Livingstone. 
The Institute for Colored Youth at Philadelphia, 
Wayland Seminary and Hampton are graduating 
yearly a fair share of the successful educators in this 
country, and continue to enroll yearly those who will 
in later years do honor to their race. 

Miss Florence and Miss Cordelia Ray, Miss Mary 
Eato and Miss Imogene Howard have all secured the 
degree of master of Pedagogy from the University of 
New York ; Miss Mollie Durham and Miss Annie 
Marriot of Philadelphia have secured Supervising 
Principals' certificates in that city. 

Have the women of this race yet made a record in 
literature ? We believe that we can answer this ques- 
tion in the affirmative. Phyllis Wheatley, our first 
authoress, gave to the world a most creditable volume 
of poems. The beautiful verses of the little slave girl, 
who though a captive yet sung her song of freedom, 
are still studied with interest. 

The path of literature open to our women with their 
yet meagre attainments has been traveled to some 
purpose by Mrs. Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, who 
has through a long widowhood sustained herself and 
her family by her pen and by her voice as a lecturer on 



14 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

the reforms of the hour. Mrs. Harper is the author of 
two volumes of poems, " Forest Leaves " and " Moses." 
A novel, " Iola Leroy, or, The Shadows Uplifted," 
from the pen of this gifted woman, has just been 
placed upon the market. As superintendent of the 
colored work in the " Woman's Christian Temperance 
Union " she has labored for years with great success. 
A member of the " National Council of Women," of 
the " Association for the Advancement of Women," 
of the " Colored Authors and Educators Association," 
she has at various meetings of these societies furnished 
valuable papers ; " Dependent Races " and " Enlight- 
ened Motherhood " being especially worthy of men- 
tion. The N. Y. Independent, A. M. E. Review, 
and other high grade journals receive contributions 
from her pen. Mrs. Anna J. Cooper, author of " A 
Voice from the South by a Black Woman of the 
South," has given to the world one of the finest con- 
tributions yet made toward the solution of the Negro 
problem. Mrs. Josephine Heard is the author of 
" Morning Glories," a charming little volume of verse. 
Mrs. M. A. Dove, the widow of Rev. W. A. Dove, is 
the author of a biographical sketch of her late hus- 
band that has received unstinted praise. " Poor Ben," 
a biographical sketch of the life of Benjamin F. Ar- 
nett, D. D., by Lucretia Coleman, and a volume of 
poems by Mrs. Frankie Wassoms, continues our list of 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 15 

fair authors. Mrs. Harvey Johnson, wife of Dr. Harvey 
Johnson, of Baltimore, Md., has published two valuable 
Sabbath School stories, for which she has received a 
good round sum ; they are both published and have 
been purchased by the American Baptist Publication 
Society of Philadelphia. Amanda Smith, the noted 
evangelist, has published a most interesting auto- 
biography of her labors in Africa, England, and the 
United States. 

Miss Florence and H. Cordelia Ray are the authors 
of an exquisite memorial volume in honor of their 
father, the late Charles B. Ray, of New York City. 
"Aunt Lindy," a story from the pen of Mrs. Win, E. 
Matthews, president of the Women's Loyal Union of 
Brooklyn, N. Y., is our latest contribution to author- 
ship. Mrs. Matthews is widely known by her chosen 
nom de plume " Victoria Earle." 

In Journalism. 

The sex and race have reached high-water marks 
through the editorship of "Free Speech," by Ida B. 
Wells; " Ringwood's Magazine," Mrs. Julia Costen ; 
"St. Matthew's Lyceum Journal," Mrs. M. E. Lambert; 
"Virginia Lancet," Lucindia Bragg; "The Boston 
Courant " and " Woman's Era," Mrs. Josephine Ruffin ; 
"The Musical Messenger," Miss Tillman; and "Wo- 
man's Light and Love," a journal of Home and Foreign 



16 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

Missions, published at Harrisburg, Pa., by Mrs. Lida 
Lowry and Mrs. Emma Ransom. 

Victoria Earle of Waverly's Magazine, Lillian A. 
Lewis of the Boston Herald, Florence A. Lewis having 
charge of editorial departments of Golden Days and 
the Philadelphia Press, show unerringly the value of our 
women's work in this line of effort. Miss Frazelia 
Campbell's translations from the German give her high 
rank in this field of work. 

Mrs. Mary E. Lee, wife of Bishop B. F. Lee, Miss 
Mary Britton, Mrs. Layton, of Los Angeles, Mrs. Alice 
Felts, wife of Rev. Cethe Felts, Anna E. Geary, Eliza- 
beth Frazier, Frances Parker, M. E. Buckner, Mattie 
F. Roberts, Ada Newton Harris, Bella Dorce, H.A.Rice, 
Josephine Turpin, Washington, Katie D.Yankton, Lucy 
Wilmot Smith, Cordelia Ray, Lucinda Bragg, Fannie 
C. Bently, Mrs. Fannie Barrier Williams, Kate Tillman, 
Mrs. Silone Yates, Florida Ridley, Medora Gould, Miss 
Dora J. Cole, Irene DeMortie, Maria Ridley, M. 
Elizabeth Johnson, Leslie Wilmot, Alice Ruth Moore, 
Mrs. Susie Shorter, Mrs. Mollie Church Terril, Miss 
Virginia Whitsett, Dr. Alice Woodby McKane, Dr. 
Lucy Hughes Brown, Maritcha Lyons, Mrs. Majors, 
Mrs. Scruggs, and Mrs. I. Garland Penn, have done good 
work in the past, and in many cases are still doing such 
work in literary lines as must reflect high honor on 
their race and sex. 



Work of the afro-american woman. 17 

The profession of medicine has proven more attract- 
ive, and more lucrative also, to Afro-American women 
than either of the other liberal professions. We have 
some dozen graduates of the finest institutions in the 
country ; among the earliest is Dr. Susan McKinney, a 
graduate of the Women's Medical College of N. Y. ; 
having been a student under Dr. Clement Lozier is 
largely to the advantage of Dr. McKinney. As a mem- 
ber of the Medical Staff of the Women's Dispensary 
and of the City Society of Homoeopathy the Doctor is 
doing efficient work ; this combined with a large and 
rapidly growing practice makes her labors along race 
efforts especially worthy of commendation. Dr. R J. 
Cole and Dr. Caroline V. Anderson were the pioneers 
from the Phila. Women's Medical College ; Dr. Cole is 
also an excellent German scholar. Dr. Anderson, al- 
though not an author in her own right, yet gave valu- 
able assistance to her father, Wm. Still, Esq., in the 
preparation of his famous work "The Underground 
Railroad." Dr. Anderson conducts a Dispensary in 
connection with the mission work of the Berean Pres- 
byterian Church, South College Ave., Phila., of which her 
husband, the Rev. Matthew Anderson, is pastor. The 
doctor has secured through the kindness of wealthy 
friends an additional aid to the work of this mission by 
the gift of a cottage at Mt. Pleasant to be used as a re- 
treat for invalids. Dr. Verina Morton is practising in 
2 



18 WORK OF THE AFRO-AM ERICAN WOMAN. 

partnership with her husband, an eminent physician of 
Brooklyn, N. Y. Dr. Alice Woodby McKane was resi- 
dent physician at the Haynes Normal and Industrial 
School until her marriage with Dr. McKane. She has 
lately organized a Nurses' Training School at Savannah, 
Ga. Dr. Hallie Tanner Johnson, the eldest daughter of 
Bishop B. T. Tanner of the A. M. E. Church, is resi- 
dent physician at Tuskegee University, Ala. This lady 
had the honor of being the first woman of any race to 
practise medicine in the State of Alabama. She has 
since entering upon her work at Tuskegee established a 
Nurses' Training School and Dispensary at that insti- 
tution. The Doctor has lately become the wife of Prof. 
John Quincy Johnson, President of Allen University. 
Dr. Alice Bennett, of the Women's Medical College, is 
pleasantly located in the East. Dr. Consuelo Clark, a 
graduate of the Cincinnati Medical College, is an 
eminently successful practitioner. Dr.GeorgianaRumly, 
deceased, was a recent graduate of Howard University. 
Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tenn., has two 
female graduates, Dr. Georgia L. Patton of the class 
of 93, now an independent Medical Missionary at 
Monrovia, Liberia, and Dr. Lucinda D. Key, class of 
94, a successful practitioner at Chattanooga, Tenn. 
Dr. Lucy Hughes Brown, the latest graduate we have 
to record in this honorable profession, is now an 
alumnus of the Women's Medical College, Philadelphia,, 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 19 

Dr. Brown has entered upon an excellent practice at 
Wilmington, N. C. Miss L. C. Fleming, who has la- 
bored very efficiently as a missionary in South Africa, 
has entered upon her medical course at the above insti- 
tution. We have in the profession of pharmacy, three 
graduates of Meharry Medical College, these ladies 
having taken their degrees at this year's Commence- 
ment, Miss Matilda Lloyd, of Nashville, Tenn., Miss 
Margaret A. Miller, of S. C, and, Miss Bella B. Cole- 
man, who has entered a drug store at Natchez, Miss. 

Dr. Ida Gray, our only known graduate in dentistry, 
hails from the University at Mich., receiving her degree 
in 1890. Dr. Gray at once entered upon her work and 
has found herself highly appreciated. The Doctor has 
a charming personality. 

We have as trained nurses Mrs. Minnie Hogan, of 
the Nurses' Training School of the University of Pa., 
Miss Annie Reeve and Mrs. Nicholson of the Women's 
Medical College, Mrs. Georgian Rumbly, lately de- 
ceased, took a Nurse's course at Howard University 
and practised this profession prior to entering upon a 
Medical course. 

We have in the profession of law three graduates, 
Mrs. Mary Shadd Cary, of Washington, D. C, Miss 
Florence Ray, of N.Y., and Miss Ida Piatt, of Chicago. 
The first named is also an eloquent lecturer the second 
an author of merit. Miss Ida B. Piatt, of Chicago, 



20 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

has the honor of being the only representative 
of the race now practising at the bar. Miss Piatt 
is a native of Chicago, a graduate of the High 
School of that city, at the early age of sixteen 
she had finished the course taking first rank among 
the students of that institution. At a later date 
this studious young lady entered an insurance office 
acting in the capacity of stenographer and private 
secretary where the correspondence required proficiency 
in the German and French languages. In 1892 she 
entered a prominent law office as stenographer and at a 
later date she established an independent office of law 
reporting and stenography, (Germans as it must be 
said to their credit in this as in most similiar cases 
giving the largest percentage of patronage received 
from the dominant race). Two years ago Miss Piatt 
entered the Chicago Law School from which she has 
recently graduated with the exceedingly creditable 
average of 96. This lady deserves unstinted praise for 
her courage and perseverance. Busy at her usual work 
during the day she had only the evening hours in 
which to pursue her chosen profession and yet ranked 
among the best students of her class. 

No woman of the race has completed a theological 
course so far as we can learn, but large numbers inspired 
with zeal for the Master's kingdom have gone forth 
to evangelistic and mission work. Amanda Smith, now 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 21 

laboring in Canada, spent many months with Bishop 
Taylor in the opening up of his mission work in 
Africa. 

Perhaps it might be said we have done the least 
in the line of State work and yet we believe, that ac- 
cording to the opportunities accorded us we have done 
our share. In time of war, in famine, in time of fire 
or flood, and especially during the horrors of pestilence 
the women of this race have done noble work often 
calling forth public praise; as was the case at Memphis, 
a few years ago, when the mayor of that city compli- 
mented the women of the race for the kindness to the 
sufferers in the awful epidemic that had recently visited 
that district. 

In the East and West, on the School and local option 
question they have given able support, in local and 
ward charity they have always done their share of the 
work in hand. Miss Amelia Mills, of Philadelphia, 
has been for years a mqst efficient worker especially 
along the line of the Country Week Association. 

During the World's Fair we had five experienced 
refined and cultivated women upon the World's Fair 
State Committees, Miss Imogene Howard, of N. Y., 
Mrs. Fannie Barrier Williams, of Chicago, who read a 
most able paper before the World's Parliament of 
Religions, Miss Florence A. Lewis, of Philadelphia, 
who was also World's Fair correspondent for the Phila- 



22 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

delphia Times. Mrs. S. A. Williams, of New Orleans 
and Mrs. M. A. Curtis, of Chicago. 

Along the line of Art we have one noble repre- 
sentative : the work of Edmonia Lewis, the sculptress, 
is so well known that it scarce needs repetition ; her 
" Cleopatra Dying," exhibited at the Centennial Exhi- 
bition, received a medal of honor. Most of her works 
have been sold to titled persons of Europe. Elizabeth 
Greenfield Selika, Flora Batson Bergen, Madame 
Sisseretta Jones, Madame Saville Jones, Madame 
Nellie Brown Mitchell, Madame Dessiro Plato, Mrs. 
Lizzie Pugh Dugan, and Miss Agnes Tucker rank as 
the Pattis and Nilssons of the race. In many cases 
not only delighting the millions of the common 
people, but receiving marked tokens of apprecia- 
tion from the crowned heads of the European nations, 
Hallie Quinn Brown, Ednorah Nahr, Henrietta 
Vinton Davis, Alice Franklin, now Mrs. T. McCants 
Stewart, Mary Harper, Matilda Herbert and Emma 
White take rank among the finest elocutionists 
of the United States. As accomplished pianists 
we have Madame Montgomery, Madame Williams, 
Mrs. Ida Gilbert Chestnut, Miss Inez Casey and Mrs. 
Cora Tucker Scott. The women of this race have 
always been industrious, however much the traducers 
of the race may attempt to make it appear otherwise. 
They are proving daily the truth of this assertion. 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 23 

The following word of praise from a recent writer, in 
the " Boston Transcript," voices this self evident 
truth as set forth in the present condition of the 
most humble of our women, laboring in the South- 
land. This writer in the closing lines of an excep- 
tionally truthful article entitled, " The Southern Plan- 
tation of To day," gives this tribute to the Afro- 
American woman of this section of our fair land. 
" Too much credit cannot be given these hard-working 
wives and mothers, who hoe, rake, cook, wash, chop, 
patch and mend, from morning until night; very often 
garments will be patched until scarcely a trace of the 
original foundation material can be seen, and there are 
many cases where the wife is much the best ' cotton 
chopper ' of the two, and her work far more desirable 
than her husband's. The wife works as hard as her 
husband — harder in fact, because when her field work 
is over she cooks the simple meals, washes the 
clothes, and patches the garments for her 
numerous family by the blaze of a lightwood 
torch after the members of the household are 
rolled in their respective ' quilts ' and voyaging in 
slumberland. She does more than this, for she raises 
chickens and turkeys, sometimes geese and ducks, 
using the eggs for pocket money." 

The women of this race have been industrious but 
it is only in late years, that they have reaped the 



24 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

fruits of their own industry. Many have built up 
businesses for themselves that net thousands of dollars. 
Mrs. Henrietta Duterte, the oldest and most successful 
undertaker of color in Philadelphia, is a brilliant ex- 
ample, Mrs. Addison Foster is also a successful worker 
in this field of effort. 

Mrs. Winnie Watson of Louisville is a graduate of 
the Clark School of embalming. She graduated in a 
class of forty-five, three colored and forty-two white, 
and yet took first honor. She has entered into part- 
nership with her husband who is an undertaker. 

Mrs. Caroline E. White is a retired dry goods mer- 
chant of Philadelphia. Mrs. Margaret Jones, cateress, 
and many of our women in the Eastern and Western 
States having handsome millinery, dressmaking, and 
hair dressing parlors, carried on successfully attest 
the business capacity of the Afro-American woman. 
For years the finest tonsorial parlor on the Pacific 
coast, was owned and conducted by a woman of the 
race. As managers of the finest grade of hotels, they 
have been a marked success. 

It is stated on the authority of numbers of repu- 
table journals, that in the camp at Yasoo, Montana, a 
colored woman named Millie Ringold ran the first 
hotel at that place and established an enviable reputa- 
tion as a prospector and also, that Mrs. C. Whetzel, a 
resident of St. John, New Brunswick, becoming wid- 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 25 

owed in early life continued the ice trade formerly 
carried on by her husband. She first secured a long 
lease on the only body of fresh water within city limits 
with this advantage secured she placed the whole bus- 
iness on a secure footing, providing all modern 
improvements to secure the desired end, and at present 
has the monopoly of this business in that city. 
Of late years she has invented an ice house, whereby 
meats and other provisions may be kept for months 
without losing their sweetness. 

As stenographers, type writers, book keepers, and 
sales women those of the race who have gained a 
foothold in these employments have never failed to 
give satisfaction. 

Mrs. M. E. Elliot years ago secured a patent on 
several toilet articles and opened branch establishments 
in many cities. 

A colored woman has a contract for hauling sand at 
a small town in Florida. In connection with this work 
she carries on a small farm and poultry yard gaining 
thereby more than a comfortable living for herself and 
family. Miss Maud Benjamin, of Washington, has 
patented a call bell. Mrs. N. F. Mossell, of Phila., 
has invented a camping table and portable kitchen. 
Many unique inventions are now in the possession of 
Afro-American women too poor to secure patents. 

That the women of this race did not lack force of 



26 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

character, was shown at an early day, when Elizabeth 
Freemen, popularly known as " Mum Bett," and Jennie 
Slew of Ipswich sued for their liberty under the Bill 
of Rights, both winning their cases. 

It is also on record that Deborah Gannet, who had 
enlisted during the Revolutionary war in Captain 
Wells' company, under the name of Robert Shurtliffe, 
serving from May, 1782, until October 23, 1783, 
discharged the duties of her office and at the same time, 
preserved inviolate the virtue of her sex, and was 
granted therefore a pension of thirty-four pounds. 

" ' Happy ' or Kate Ferguson, born a slave, opened a 
Sunday School in Dr. John Mason's Murray Street 
Church, in New York City, in 1774. She secured 
homes for forty-eight children, white and black; The 
school growing, the lecture room was opened, Dr. 
Mason and his teachers assisting ' Happy ' in her work." 
So says Colored American, a book printed through a 
fund bequeathed by Lindley Murray, "to promote 
piety, virtue and the truths of Christianity." This was 
the beginning of the Sunday School in Murray Street 
Church, and Kate Ferguson, the colored woman who 
had been a slave is believed to have thus gathered the 
first Sunday School in New York City. Says W. E. 
Chandler in his history of the Sabbath Schools of 
New York City, after stating the above facts, " God 
bless the dusky hands that broke here an alabaster 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 27 

box, the perfume of which still lingers about the great 
metropolis." 

We have in the line of musical composers, Miss 
Estelle Rickets, Miss Bragg, Miss Tillman, Mrs. 
Yeocum and Mrs. Ella Mossell. In artistic work, 
Miss Julia F. Jones, Mrs. Parker Denny and Miss 
Nelson, now an art student of Philadelphia, take 
rank with those who are doing successful work. 
Miss Ida Bowser is a graduate of the Musical 
Department of the University of Pennsylvania. We 
have also several graduates of the Boston Conserva- 
tory of Music. The New York Conservatory has also 
several of our girls as pupils; Miss Blanche D. Wash- 
ington is a student in harmony and composition. 
Madame Thurber's invitation and Prof. Dvorak's state- 
ment that the future music of this country must be 
founded upon what are called Negro melodies, has given 
great encouragement to the young of the race who are 
ambitious musically. Of late years the dramatic in- 
stinct has developed sufficiently to enable the presen- 
tation of many of the best plays. The Afro-American 
woman taking her part therein with an ease and grace 
that astonishes those who go to mock her efforts. 
Perhaps the effort that is most unique and yet entirely 

consistent with the character of the race has been 
done along the line of philanthropic work. Within 

these later years since better opportunities for educa- 



28 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

tional and industrial work have been opened to them in 
the more favored sections of the country ; many of our 
women have turned aside from laboring for their in- 
dividual success and given thought to the condition of 
the weak and suffering classes. They have shown 
that the marvellous loving kindness and patience that 
is recorded of the native women of Africa, by Mungo 
Park, the great African explorer, that forms the tie that 
still holds captive to this day the heart of the white 
foster child of the " black mammies " of the South- 
land was not crushed out by the iron heel of slavery 
but still wells up in their bosoms and in this brighter 
day overflows in compassion for the poor and helpless 
of their own down-trodden race. 

Two of the earliest laborers in this field of effort 
were " Moses " and " Sojourner Truth," Harriet, 
known for many years as " Moses," was a full blooded 
African woman, who escaped from slavery on the 
Eastern shore of Maryland. She returned to the South 
nineteen times, carrying off four hundred slaves. 
Gov. Andrew of Massachusetts, sent her as a scout and 
spy with the union army during the war; at its close she 
labored for the soldiers in the hospitals and later with 
the " Freedmen's Bureau," she is now living at 
Auburn, N. Y., where she looks after the poor and 
infirm of her race. " Sojourner Truth " was born in 
Webster County, N. Y., she escaped from slavery and 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 29 

labored for years in the Anti-Slavery, Woman's 
Suffrage and Temperance movements. She was a 
woman of magnificient presence, great power and 
magnetism. She possessed at her death a book 
called by her, the " Book of Life," it contained kind 
words and thoughts for her from the great of every 
land. Mrs. Mary Ella Mossell, wife of Rev. C. W. 
Mossell, labored with her husband for eight years at 
Port Au Prince, Hayti, establishing at that point a 
mission school for girls. Mrs. Mossell died in Amer- 
ica two years after her return to their home at Balti- 
more, Md. The school is a portion of the work of 
Foreign Missions of the A. M. E. Church, and has 
been named the Mossell Mission School in honor' of 
its deceased founder. 

Miss Elizabeth Ralls, the organizer of the " Sarah 
Allen Mission and Faith Home," of Philadelphia, is a 
remarkable character. Without education or wealth, 
with a heart overflowing with love to the poor, she 
has from childhood, labored in season and out of 
season in the mission cause. For many years she 
served a Christmas dinner to the poor of her race, in 
Philadelphia, over five hundred being present. Boxes of 
clothing and food were distributed monthly. Of late 
years she has rented a house and taken in the aged who 
could not gain admittance to other institutions. She 
takes her basket on her arm and goes to the market, 



30 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

gleaning for her poor. The whole work is carried on by 
faith. Her sweet, loving countenance, the " darlings " 
and " dovies " that drop from her lips as she places the 
hands on one's shoulder and looks lovingly into the 
eyes of the person addressed carries conviction. Her 
coffers are always filled to the extent of the actual 
need of " her poor people," as she calls them. Mrs. 
Sarah Gorham is now a laborer in Africa under the 
Women's Mite Missionary Society of the A. M. E. 
Church. Mission work has also been done in the 
South by Miss Lucy Laney, of Augusta, Ga. , and 
Miss Alice Dugged Cary, Mrs. Lynch, and Mrs. 
McClean, in the West and Southwest are doing good 
work. Mrs. S. A. Williams, of New Orleans, has or- 
ganized an orphanage which is succeeding. Mrs. 
Mary Barboza, a daughter of the late Henry Highland 
Garnet, late consul to Liberia, sacrificed her life labor- 
ing to establish a school for girls in Liberia. Mrs. 
Roberts, widow of ex-president Roberts, of Liberia, is 
laboring to establish a hospital for girls at that point. 
Mrs. Fanny Barrier Williams has co-operated with a 
corps of physicians in establishing a hospital and 
Nurses' Training School in Chicago. Mrs. Maria 
Shorter, wife of Bishop James Shorter, of the A. M. E. 
Church, by a large contribution, assisted in the open- 
ing of Wilberforce College. Mrs. Olivia Washington, 
the deceased wife of Prof. Booker Washington, of 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 31 

Tuskegee Industrial School, did much by her labors 
to place that institution on a secure footing. Mrs. 
I. Shipley, of Camden, N. J., has established a Faith 
Retreat at Asbury Park ; she also does much mission 
work in her native city. Misses Fanny and Alma 
Somerville, of Philadelphia, are quiet but efficient 
mission workers, especially along the line of Work- 
ing Girls' Clubs. Miss Planter, a wealthy lady of color, 
gave a large bequest to Livingstone College, N. C. 
Mrs. Catherine Teagle and Mrs. Harriet Hayden both 
bequeathed handsome sums to the cause of Afro- 
American education. Mrs. Stephen Smith and Mrs. 
Mary A. Campbell, wife of Bishop J. P. Campbell, and 
Mrs. Margaret Boling have given largely of their 
means and labors toward the establishment of the 
Old Folks' Home at Philadelphia. Miss Nettie 
Wilmer, who has done efficient mission work in 
various lines, is now laboring for the upbuilding of 
the Gloucester Industrial School, Va. 

The Lend a Hand, Christian Endeavor, Epworth 
League and like institutions have a large contingent of 
our women as efficient workers. The last effort at 
organized work by the womanhood of this race has been 
the organization of two associations, namely, the 
Woman's Loyal Union of Brooklyn and New York, and 
the Colored Woman's League, of Washington, D. C. 
These associations have for their work the collecting 



S2 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

of statistics and facts showing the moral, intellectual, 
industrial, and social growth and attainments of Afro- 
Americans. They aim to foster unity of purpose, 
to consider and determine the methods that will pro- 
mote the best interests of the Afro-American race, to 
bring into active fellowship and organic union all move- 
ments which may be classed under the head of Woman's 
Work. It is also their intention to receive and distribute 
information concerning the activities of Afro-Ameri- 
cans throughout the length and breadth of the land. 

Perhaps the greatest work in philanthropy yet ac- 
complished by any woman of the race is that under- 
taken and so successfully carried out at the present 
hour by Miss Ida B. Wells. 

This lady is a native of Holly Springs, Miss. She 
received a liberal education for the greater part at 
Rust University. A teacher for a few months in the 
State of Arkansas, she at a later date became a resident 
and teacher at Memphis, Tenn. This position she held 
for some seven years. Criticism of the condition of af- 
fairs prevailing in the colored school of Memphis gained 
the lady the ill-will of the Board of Education, and at 
the following term she failed to receive an appointment. 

Miss Wells, nothing daunted, purchased a one-third 
interest in the Memphis Free Speech. The paper was 
much benefited by this fact and continued to be an 
eminent success from every point of view. 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 33 

March 9, 1892, occurred at Memphis (in a section 
of the town called the Curve) a most brutal and out- 
rageous lynching of Afro-Americans. An attempt 
was made by the press of Memphis to justify this 
crime by the most flagrantly untruthful statements 
regarding the conduct of the men lynched. 

Miss Wells at once began in Free Speech a series of 
letters and editorials setting forth the true state of the 
case. These editorials were succeeded by a series of 
articles criticising and condemning the treatment of 
her race in Memphis. 

At a later date, during the month of May, 1892, 
there appeared in the columns of Free Speech an 
editorial from the pen of our heroine that has since 
become famous. 

Starting out on a visit to Oklahoma and later to 
New York City, Miss Wells stopped in Philadelphia 
on a visit to Mrs. F. E. W. Harper and to take a peep 
at the doings of the A. M. E. General Conference then 
in session at that city. What was her consternation 
to find letters pouring in upon her from friends and 
correspondents at Memphis warning her not to return 
to her office on pain of being lynched. She was in- 
formed that her newspaper plant had been destroyed 
and the two male editors had been forced to flee for 
their lives. 

Miss Wells was at once placed upon the staff of the 



34 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

New York Age, and in the issue of that paper of June 
27, 1892, gave the facts that led to the suspension of 
her paper and the real motive for Lynch and Mob 
Law. 

In the early fall Miss Wells entered upon a lectur- 
ing tour among her own race in the United States ; 
later a committee of ladies under the title of The 
Woman's Loyal Union of Brooklyn and New York 
gave her a grand reception, a testimonial purse of $400 
and also a beautiful gold pen engraved with the legend 
" Mizpah." 

Miss Wells continued her lecturing tour meeting 
with a hearty welcome, especially in the city of Boston. 
The press of that city gave her a flattering reception, 
publishing lengthy interviews and carefully reporting 
her addresses. Mrs. Josephine Ruffin, of the Boston 
Courant y used her influence to get Miss Wells's cause 
a hearing before the most exclusive Women's Clubs 
of Boston and with great success. The Moral Educa- 
tional Association, of Boston, was of this number. 

The ire of the Memphis press was aroused by the 
courtesy shown Miss Wells at Boston, and retaliated 
by flooding the North with slanderous accusations 
against the martyr editor. 

During the late fall Miss Wells was visited at Phila- 
delphia by Miss Catherine Impey, of London, Eng- 
land, editor of Anti-Caste. By this lady's invitation 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 35 

Miss Wells sailed to England in the spring to present 
her cause to the reform element of English society. 
She lectured on " Lynch Law," in England and Scot- 
land, for many weeks, speaking at forty meetings in 
most of the prominent cities of England and Scotland. 
At Glasgow, London, Liverpool, Edinburg, Aberdeen, 
Huntley, Morningside, Manchester, Carruter's Close, 
and many other points, she was heartily welcomed by 
the best people ; great interest in the cause she repre- 
sented was thereby aroused. This interest culminated 
in the formation of an important society. 

In the drawing-room of Mrs. Isabella Favie Mayo, 
April 21, 3 P. M., 1893, at Aberdeen, Scotland, with 
Miss Wells, Miss Catherine Impey and Dr. George 
Fernands, together with fifty of the most prominent 
clergy, professionals, tradesmen and others, was put 
in operation a force that will tell on the life of unborn 
generations. A second meeting was held later on at 
Music Hall, Aberdeen, April 24th. Professor Iverach 
offered a resolution condemnatory of lynching, which 
was seconded by Rev. James Henderson, the son of an 
ex-Mayor of this city. 

The society formed received the name of " The 
Society for the Recognition of the Brotherhood of 
Man." Its aims were stated in the following declara- 
tion : — 



36 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

(a) The Society for the Recognition of the Brother- 
hood of Man declares itself fundamentally op- 
posed to the system of race separation, by which 
the despised members of a community are cut 
off from the social, civil, and religious life of their 
fellow-men. 

(p) It regards lynching and other forms of brutal in- 
justice inflicted on the weaker communities of 
the world as having their root in Race Prejudice, 
which is directly fostered by the estrangement 
and lack of sympathy consequent on Race Sepa- 
ration. 

(c) This Society for the Recognition of the Brother- 
hood of Man therefore requires its members to 
refrain from all complicity in the system of Race 
Separation, whether as individuals, or by co- 
membership in organizations which tolerate and 
provide the same. 

And those becoming members gave the following 
pledge : — 

/, the undersigned, promise to help in securing 
to every member of the human family, Freedom, Equal 
Opportunity and Brotherly Consideration. 

The publication * Fraternity, into which Anti- Caste 

* In view of the recent death of S. J. Celestine Edwards, editor of Fraternity, 
the Society for the Recognition of the Brotherhood of Man have considered it advis- 
able to declare that publication no longer the official organ of the society. 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 37 

had been merged, became the organ of the Society, 
and S. J. Celestine Edwards was appointed editor. 

Miss Eliza Wigham, Secretary of the Anti-Slavery 
Society, entertained Miss Wells during this visit. 

Miss Wells soon after returned to the States, estab- 
lished herself in Chicago, and as a staff contributor to 
The Conservator and New York Age did valuable 
work that led to a wide-spread discussion of the sub- 
ject of lynching of Afro-Americans in the Southland. 
Soon after she began the preparation of a pamphlet 
entitled " The Reason Why," for distribution at the 
World's Fair. This was a most carefully prepared 
series of papers on race subjects by such writers as 
the Hon. Fred. Douglass, I. Garland Penn, F. L. Bar- 
nett and Ida B. Wells. 

Miss Wells was sent by the Inter-Ocean to secure 
the facts concerning a lynching case ; these facts she 
secured and the result of her work was published in 
the columns of that influential journal. 

Soon after, a few hours before the lynching of Lee 
W 7 alker, at Memphis, Term., the following telegram 
was sent to the Inter-Ocean y Chicago : — 

"Memphis, July 22. 
"To Inter-Ocean, Chicago: — Lee Walker, colored 

man, accused of , to be taken out and burned by 

whites. Can you send Miss Ida Wells to write it up? 
Answer. R. M. Martin, with Pub. Ledger!' 



88 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

Miss Wells did much effective work for the race at the 
World's Fair. At its close she was soon after invited 
to again lecture in England under the auspices of " The 
Society for the Recognition of the Brotherhood of 
Man," which she had been instrumental in forming at 
her previous visit. 

On February 28, 1894, Miss Wells once more sailed 
for the shores of " Old England." While making her 
second lecturing tour, under the auspices of the above- 
named Society, resolutions endorsing her mission 
were secured from the following associations : The 
Congregational Union, National Baptist Association, 
Young Men's Christian Association, National British 
Women's Temperance Association, Women's Liberal 
Association, Society of Friends, Society for the Union 
of Churches, and the Unitarian Conference. 

Lady Jeune, Mrs. Lockhart Smith, Charles F. Aked, 
Sir Edward Russell, and other prominent persons and 
members of the nobility opened their drawing-rooms 
to a favored few to listen to the story of the woes of 
Afro-Americans as recited by Miss Wells. Sir Joseph 
Pease presided at the parliamentary breakfast given 
in Miss Wells' honor. 

Miss Ellen Richards, who so many years ago had 
purchased the freedom of Frederick Douglass and Wm. 
Wells Brown, received our young philanthropist as 
her honored guest. 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAX WOMAN. 39 

The following clipping from one of Miss Wells' 
letters to the New York Age will give an excellent idea 
of the drift of the public meetings held by her in 
London : — 

The Rev. C. F. Aked (Liverpool i moved: "That 
this union, having learned with grief and horror of 
the wrongs done to the colored people of the South- 
ern States of America by lawless mobs, expresses the 
opinion that the perpetuation of such outrages, un- 
checked by the civil power, must necessarily reflect 
upon the administration of justice in the United States 
and upon the honor of its people. It therefore calls 
upon all lovers of justice, of freedom, and of brother- 
hood in the churches of the United States, to demand 
for ever\' citizen of the Republic, accused of crime, a 
proper trial in the courts oi law." He said that the 
scandal he referred to had no parallel in the history 
of the world, and it was their duty as Christians to 
do their best to put a stop to it. In the Southern 
States of America there are 25.000 negro teachers in 
elemental'}' schools, 500 negro preachers trained in the 
theological institutes ot the people themselves, and 
2500 negro preachers who had not received college 
training. The colored race had also produced 300 
lawyers, 400 doctors, 200 newspapers, and they pos- 
sessed property valued at ^50,000,000 sterling. Yet 
these people are being whipped, scourged, hanged, 



40 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

flayed, and roasted at the stake. There had been 
IOOO lynchings within the last ten years, and the 
average now was from 150 to 200 every year. Some 
of these murders were foul beyond expression and 
such as to appall and disgrace humanity. Most of the 
lynchings were alleged to be for assaults upon women, 
but only a small proportion of cases were really of 
that kind. The mobs who lynched these poor people 
were generally drunk and half insane and always 
bestial. The church must not keep silent while the 
press spoke out, and he was glad to see that the Daily 
Chronicle was doing splendid service in the cause 
of humanity — (cheers) — called attention to the subject 
that morning, and told them to give a moral nudge to 
their American brethren. It was the duty of great 
nations to shame each other, and if they could do any 
good, he should be pleased. He appealed to them to 
prove by their action the solidarity of the human race 
and the brotherhood of man under the fatherhood of 
God v and thus to further the interest of the kingdom 
of heaven. (Cheers.) 

Rev. Charles F. Aked was one of Miss Wells' ablest 
English supporters, and gave an excellent account of 
her work in the Review of the Churches. 

Speaking of the purpose to be served by Miss Wells' 
mission to England, Mr. Aked says:— - 

" One thing she has set herself to do, and that there 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 41 

seems to be every possibility of her accomplishing. 

Miss Wells does not suppose that any direct politi- 
cal action can be taken, but she does suppose that 
British opinion, if aroused, can influence American 
press and pulpit, and through the press and pulpit 
the people of the Northern States." 

The Anti-Lynching Committee formed in England 
has just given to the world through the publication of 
a letter from Miss Florence Balcrarnie in the August 
23d issue of the New York Age a list of its members. 
The men and women who in the name of humanity 
and civilization have banded themselves together in 
this committee are still adding both British and Ameri- 
cans to their numbers. Among those who have al- 
ready joined are : — 

The Right Honorable the Duke of Argyle, K. G., 
K. T. ; the Rev. C. F. Aked, Liverpool ; Mr. W. 
Allan, M. P., Gateshead-on-Tyne ; Mr. Win. E. A, 
Axon, Manchester ; the Rev. R. Armstrong, Liver- 
pool ; Mr. Thomas Burt, M. P., Morpeth ; the Right 
Honorable Jacob Bright, M. P., Manchester ; Mrs. 
Jacob Bright; Mr. Win. Byles, M. P., Bradford; Mrs. 
Byles, Bradford; Mr. W. Blake-Odgers, Mr. E. K. 
Blyth, Mr. Percy Bunting, Mrs. Percy Bunting, Mr. 
Herbert Burrows, Mr. Bertram, Miss Bertram, Mr. P. 
W. Clayden, Mrs. P. W r . Clayden, Mr. James G. Clarke, 



42 WORK OF THE AFRO- AMERICAN WOMAN. 

the Rev. Dr. John Clifford, London ; Sir Charles 
Cameron, Bart., M. P., Glasgow ; Mr. Francis A. Clian- 
ning, M. P., Southampton ; the Rev. Estlin Carpenter, 
Oxford; Mr. Moncure D. Conway, Mrs. Conway, 
U. S. A. and London; Mrs. E. T. Cook, London; 
Mr. Wm. Crosfield, M. P., Liverpool ; Mrs. J. Pass- 
more Edwards, London ; Mr. C. Diamond, M. P., 
Monaghan, N. ; Mr. T. E. Ellis, M. P., Nottingham ; 
Mr. A. E. Fletcher, London ; Miss Isabella Ford, 
Leeds ; the Right Honorable Sir T. Eldon Gorst, 
M. P., Cambridge University; Mr. Frederic Harrison; 
Mr. Justin McCarthy, M. P., Longford, N. ; Mr. 
Dadabhai Naoroji, M. P., India and London; the 
Rev. Dr. Newman Hall, the Rev. Dr. Robert Horton, 
Mr. T. A. Lang, London; Miss Kate Riley, South- 
port; Lady Stevenson, London; Dr. Spence Watson, 
Mrs. Spence Watson, Gateshead-on-Tyne ; Mr. J. A. 
Murray Macdonald, M. P., Mr. Tom Mann, London ; 
the Rev. Dr. W. F. Moulton, Cambridge ; Sir Joseph 
Pease, Bart., M. P., Durham ; Sir Hugh Gilzen Reid, 
Birmingham ; Mrs. Henry Richardson, York ; Sir 
Edward Russell, Liverpool ; Mr. Sapara, Africa and 
London ; Mr. C. P. Scott, Manchester ; Professor James 
Stuart, M. P., Mrs. Stuart, London; Mr. Charles 
Schwann, M. P., Manchester; Miss Sharman-Craw- 
ford, Ulster ; the Rev. Canon Shuttleworth, London ; 
the Rev. S. Alfred Steinthal, Manchester; Mrs. Stan- 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 43 

ton-Blatch, U. S. A. and Basingstoke ; Alderman 
Ben Tillett, London ; Mr. John Wilson, M. P., Glas- 
gow; the Rev. Philip Wicksteed, Mrs. Wicksteed, 
London ; Mr. Alfred Webb, M. P., Waterford, W. ; 
Mr. S. D. Wade, London; Mr. Mark Whitwill, Bris- 
tol; Miss Eliza Wigham, Edinburgh; Mr. Wm 
Woodall, M. P., Hanley ; Mr. J. Passmore Edwards, 
honorable treasurer ; Miss Florence Balgarnie, honor- 
able secretary. 

This has been further supplemented by the follow- 
ing list from the Philadelphia Press of Sunday, August 
26, 1894, containing many English, and not a few names 
of persons of great influence, natives of the United 
States : — 

Duke of Argyle, Sir John Gorst, member of Parlia- 
ment for the University of Cambridge and student of 
Social Phenomena ; Justin McCarthy, Sir John Lub- 
bock, Ellis Ashmead Bartlett, Rt. Rev. Ed. White 
Benson, Archbishop of York and Primate of all Eng- 
land ; Passmore Edwards, treasurer, who has in hand 
5000 pounds to carry on the work of the committee ; 
Mrs. Humphrey Ward, president of the Women's 
Auxilliary Branch of the League ; Lady Henry Som- 
erset, the Countess of Aberdeen ; the Countess of 
Meath, founder of the Ministering Children's League; 
J. Keir Hardie. Americans — Richard Watson Gilder, 
of Century Company ; Samuel Gompers, labor leader ; 



44 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

Miss Frances Willard, Archbishop Ireland, Dr. John 
Hall, W. Bourke Cochran, Carl Schurz, Mgr. Ducey 
Bishop David Lessums, of the Protestant Episcopal 
Diocese of Louisiana; Archbishop Francis Jansens, 
of the Roman Catholic Arch-Diocese of Louisiana; 
Bishop Hugh Miller Thompson, of Mississippi ; Bishop 
A. Van de Vyer, of Virginia. 

The Legislatures of Texas, Alabama and Florida 
have consented to give a hearing to deputations sent 
out by the League. 

The following interesting and pathetic fact is stated 
(concerning the first contribution to the funds of the 
above-mentioned League) by Miss Wells in the Aug. 
23d, 1894, issue of the New York Age: — 

The first donation that the committee received came 
from a party of a dozen Africans who were in Eng- 
land. Desiring to show their appreciation of what 
had been done for me and the cause of the race, they 
sent 14 pounds, or nearly $70, as a testimonial of appre- 
ciation. I shall be glad to give a copy of their letter 
in another issue. We want the same voluntary re- 
sponse on this side to carry on the work here. Shall 
we have it? Ida B. Wells. 

128 Clark street, Chicago, 111. 

Returning to the United States July 24, 1894, Miss 
Wells was enabled to be present in person at a meet- 
ing of endorsement of her work in England held at 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 45 

Fleet Street A. M. E. Church, New York City. T. 
Thomas Fortune, editor of the New York Age and 
President of the National Afro-American League, had 
called for a national expression on Lynch Law by the 
various Leagues throughout the country, and the above- 
mentioned meeting voiced New York's Afro-American 
sentiment on the question. 

The press comments on Miss Wells' work would 
already fill many volumes, some favorable, others un- 
favorable to the cause of the Afro-American, but all 
showing conclusively the truth of a statement made 
by Miss Wells in a recent issue of the Age : 

" That the Afro- American has the ear of the civilized 
world for the first time since emancipation." Eminent 
Afro- American leaders, such as the Hon. Frederick 
Douglass; Rev. Harvey Johnson, D. D., Baltimore, 
Md. ; Bishop H. M. Turner and Dr. H. T. Johnson, 
of the Christian Recorder, have endorsed Miss Wells' 
work, also the National Afro-American League, Equal 
Rights Council of Boston, Afro-American Leagues 
of Baltimore, Philadelphia, New Bedford, New Haven 
Rochester, and other cities, 

'" Chicago, Aug. 18. — The Chicago Anti-Lynching 
Committee has effected permanent organization with 
the following officers : President, F. L. Barnett ; vice- 
president, Mrs. J. C. Plummer; secretary, Dr. C. E. 
Bently ; treasurer, C. H. Smiley. There is an execu- 



46 WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 

tive committee of nine, two of whom are women. 
There is already a membership enrolment of 30 and the 
representative citizens of Chicago, including the pastors 
of the churches, have enlisted to fight Lynch Law. 

" The Central Executive Council have organized at 
Brooklyn, N. Y., the following-named officers being 
elected: W. L. Hunter, president; Rev. A. J. Henry, 
vice-president ; W. H. Dickerson, secretary ; and Rev. 
W. T. Dixon, treasurer. Mr. S. R. Scottron, Rev. 
Lawton, Drs. W. A. Morton, Coffey and Harper and 
Rufus L. Perry are eminent workers in this cause." 

Who shall say that such a work accomplished by 
one woman, exiled and maligned by that community 
among whom she had so long and so valiantly labored, 
bending every effort to the upbuilding of the man- 
hood and womanhood of all races, shall not place her 
in the front rank of philanthropists, not only of the 
womanhood of this race, but among those laborers of 
all ages and all climes ? 

Before closing this chapter of race history, how shall 
we estimate those humble workers who have labored 
for the upbuilding of our churches and societies, the 
opening up everywhere to the race more favorable 
school privileges, such noble souls as Mary McFarland 
Jennings and Mrs. Mary Browne, wife of William 
Browne of The True Reformers ; those dear ones who 
have so modestly ministered to the wants of the sick 



WORK OF THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN. 47 

and afflicted until their record of good works has fol- 
lowed them abroad, as with Mrs. Florida Grant, the 
beloved wife of Bishop Abram Grant, and that sweet, 
quiet worker in the Master's Vineyard, Mrs. Eliza 
Turner, the deceased wife of Bishop H. M. Turner? 

Two classes we have failed to mention thus far, 
but our hearts hold them in fullest remembrance : 
those uncrowned queens of the fireside who have been 
simply home-keepers, raising large families to a noble 
manhood and womanhood ; among these stand forth 
pre-eminently Mrs. Elizabeth Steward, wife of Dr. T. 
G. Steward, and Mrs. Bishop B. T. Tanner, and those 
other sisters still dearer to us, whose work lies around 
us with its sweet fragrance until it seems almost too 
sacred to weave into this chaplet of pearls. Of this 
number are Martha Briggs, Rebecca Steward, Katie 
Campbell Becket, and Grace Douglass. 

We close this tribute to Afro-American womanhood 
with a heart warmed and cheered, feeling that we have 
proved our case. 

Hath not the bond-woman and her scarce emanci- 
pated daughter done what they could ? 

Will not our more favored sisters, convinced of our 
desires and aspirations because of these first few feeble 
efforts, stretch out the helping hand that we may rise 
to a nobler, purer womanhood? 



A SKETCH OF AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

" They who have their eyes fixed in adoration upon 
the beauty of holiness are not far from the sight of all 
beauty. It is not permitted to us to doubt that in Music, 
in Painting, Architecture, Sculpture, Poetry, Prose, the 
highest art will be reached in some epoch of its growth 
by the robust and versatile race sprung from those 
practical idealists of the seventeenth century, those 
impassioned seekers after the invisible truth and 
beauty of goodness." — Moses Coit Tyler. 

The intellectual history of a people or nation con- 
stitutes to a great degree the very heart of its life. 
To find this history, we search the fountain-head of 
its language, its customs, its religion, and its politics 
expressed by tongue or pen, its folklore and its songs. 
The history of the Afro-American race in this country 
may be divided into three epochs — the separation 
from native land and friends, and later arrival in this 
land of forced adoption. Next follows two hundred 
and fifty years of bondage and oppression mitigated 
only through the hope thrown upon life's pathway 

by the presence of hundreds of freemen of the race 

(48) 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 49 

eking out an existence hampered on all sides by 
caste prejudice. Later, an era of freedom covered by 
twenty years of emancipation, holding in name citizen- 
ship, but defrauded of its substance by every means 
that human ingenuity could devise. Again, the intel- 
lectual history of a race is always of value in deter- 
mining the past and future of it. As a rule, a race 
writes its history in its laws and in its records. Not 
so the Afro-American : he could make no law ; de- 
prived of the opportunity to write, he could leave no 
written word; he could only protest against the injus- 
tice of his oppressors in his heart, in his song, and 
in his whispered consolations to the suffering and 
dying. 

The heredity and evironment of a people fix their 
intellectual limitations as they do their moral and 
physical. Therefore, perhaps it would be said, these 
people can have no real literature ; but in yet another 
sense let its successful achievement convince us of 
the accomplished fact. Every human attempt must 
have had its first, feeble, rudimentary steps, must have 
one day been the era of small things. The first tiny 
stream that at last swells to a broad river having 
therefore its own important place in the future life 
of that fact, so these faint, tottering intellectual steps 
must be worthy of record. With all its drawbacks 

the race has built up a literature of its own that must 
4 



50 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

be studied by the future historian of the life of the 
American nation. Afro-American literature in the 
United States, and by this we mean literature which 
has originated with the Afro-American, must be 
largely tinctured with the history of three great 
happenings in their lives. Torn from their home 
and kindred, they soon lost all memory of their 
native tongue, except as here and there some idiom 
survived. Their first faint gropings in the language of 
the new world were recitals of the woes they had 
suffered and the longing for home and loved ones. 
The soul felt desire to see again the land of their 
birth and look once more upon its beauty. But as 
memory of the fatherland became dimmed by time, 
the experiences of the life of bondage, its hardships 
and sufferings, its chastened joys and its future out- 
look toward the longed-for day of freedom that all 
believed would some day come, the ties of love and 
friendship formed, became the burden of their song. 

At the time the slave trade started in this country, 
the possibilities of the new continent were new to the 
master; he had not become adjusted to his own novel en- 
vironment. The newly imported Africans were largely 
descendants of the lowest type of African barbarism — 
history telling us they were mostly drawn from the 
coast tribes, who were easiest of capture, the white man 
fearing to go into the interior. The few belonging to 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 51 

the mountain tribes brought to this land were only 
such as had been held as prisoners of war by the 
coast tribes. The slaves were located in the warmest 
section of the New World, employed in the lowest 
forms of labor. Their environment was from every 
point of view hostile to intellectual development. 
They had been captured and enslaved that their toil 
might enrich another nation ; they were reared in the 
midst of a civilization from whose benefits they were 
largely debarred ; they were taught two things — 
reverence and obedience to authority as embodied in 
the master, and next in all of his race, and lastly to 
fear God. In spite of all impediments to intellectual 
advancement, here and there faint searchings after 
knowledge appeared among them. With a nature 
keenly alive to inquiry, the stories of the Bible took 
fast hold upon their imagination. The history of the 
children of Israel they made their own. As Moses 
through God became the deliverer of the Israelites, 
so would He give the oppressed ones of that day a 
deliverer. This seems to have been the first germ of 
intellectuality that appeared among them ; this thought 
they wove into verse and sung and crooned as a lullaby. 
In their first attempts at literature may be found their 
origin — native Africans made Americans against their 
will — the tribes to which they belonged giving a clue 
to the differences in their powers of physical endur- 



52 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

ance or strength of character, when drawn from 
mountain or coastland. Their place of residence in 
their new home, largely a sojourner in the sunny 
South ; their fear of the rigor of the northern and 
eastern climes ; the troubles they had to contend with 
from within were those caused by the jealousy and 
suspicion implanted by their cunning masters, from 
without by the lack of opportunities for educational 
or spiritual growth, it being at that day against the 
law for an Afro-American to be found with a book, and 
a felony to teach one the alphabet. In the course of 
time, however, by stealth in the South and through the 
philanthropy of individuals of the North, largely 
members of the Society of Friends, they gained a 
foretaste of education. It has been said that oratory 
is the art of a free people, but this race even in the 
days of bondage and at the first faint breath of freedom, 
seem to have given birth to those who could rank 
with the masters of this art. The matchless oratory 
of Frederick Douglass, Samuel Ruggles Ward, Jabez 
Pitt Campbell and Joseph C. Price, has never been 
surpassed by men of any race on this continent. 
Scattered through every State in the Union, the 
Afro-American unconsciously imbibed the traits of 
character and order of thought of those among whom 
he dwelt. .He became the Chesterfield of the South ; 
his courtliness even in his master's cast-off belongings 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 53 

put that of the master to shame. The slave-mother's 
loving kindness to her own and her foster child became 
a proverb ; her loving, wifely spirit of devotion and 
self-sacrifice dimmed the lustre of these virtues in 
her more favored sister of a fairer hue. 

The preacher of this race has never been surpassed 
for his powers of imagery, his pathos, his abundant 
faith in the future states of reward and punishment. 
His faith in the word of God, even as a bondsman, 
made soft the dying pillow of many a passing soul ; 
the quaintness and originality of his speech delighted 
many an auditor in the home circle, and his abounding 
love of great titles and high-sounding names has 
never ceased to amuse the student of this impression- 
able son of Ham. 

The first written works of the Afro-American were 
not issued to make money, or even to create a litera- 
ture of their own, but to form a liberal sentiment that 
would favor the abolition of slavery, or at least, the 
gradual emancipation of the slaves, and thus laboring 
they assisted the Anti-Slavery workers in the advance- 
ment of their cause. Thus, the speeches of Frederick 
Douglass, his " Life of Bondage," and other like writings 
were given to the world. At. a later day, as oppor- 
tunities for education advanced, and readers among 
their people increased, various weekly, annual, quar- 
terly and monthly publications appeared. Here and 



54 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

there some more cultured and learned member of the 
race gathered into book-form scattered sermons, church 
history and poems. Within the past twenty years 
they have become, to a large extent, their own jour- 
nalists, gathering and compiling facts about the race, 
forming plans to erect monuments to their heroes, 
recording the deeds of these heroes both in prose and 
verse. The despised Afro-American is learning daily 
to honor himself, to look with awe upon the future 
possibilities of his people within the life of this 
nation. 

The first two books written by members of the race 
in America were by native Africans, who had for a 
time drifted to the shores of Europe, and there in that 
purer light of freedom published the outpourings of 
their burdened spirits, and at that early day, as at the 
present, the song was in the minor key, never rising to 
a glad and joyous note. Both books were well 
received, their merit recognized, and their authors 
honored with the love and confidence of those who 
had minds liberal enough to recognize the worth of 
a brother, although of sable hue. The first attempt 
at book-making by an Afro-American in the United 
States was, strange to say, from the pen of a woman, 
and was entitled " Poems on Various Subjects, Relig- 
ious and Moral," by Phyllis Wheatley, servant to Mr. 
John Wheatley of Boston. The volume was dedicated 



AFRO-AMERICAX LITERATURE. 55 

to the Right Honorable the Countess of Huntington, 
by her much obliged, very humble and devoted servant, 
Phyllis Wheatley, Boston, June 12, 1773. A meekly 
worded preface occupies its usual place in this little 
book. Mr. Wheatley's letter of explanation of the 
difficulties encountered follows the preface. Fearing, 
as often occurred in those days of bitter race-hatred, 
that the authenticity of the poems would be questioned, 
an attestation was drawn up and signed by a number 
of worthy gentlemen. 

Afro-Americans are born idealists ; in them art, 
poetry, music, oratory, all lie sleeping. To these 
the first dawn of hope gave utterance. The little 
slave girl, in the safe, quiet harbor of her mistress' 
boudoir, takes heart of grace and tunes her lyre. Her 
verse shows the shadow of her unhappy lot, but rises 
above these sorrows and on the uplifted wings of song, 
floats to the starry heavens and consoles the afflicted, 
gives praise to the faithful ruler, breaks forth in love 
for the new home. 

Phyllis Wheatley, from all accounts given of her 
from every source, was of a sweet, loving disposition, 
attaching herself readily to those with whom she 
came in contact by this especial trait in her character. 
Her book was written under the pleasantest auspices, 
surrounded by loving and appreciative friends, with 
a bright fire and friendly lamp in her room that 



56 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

she might get up at any moment and jot down the 
thought. The point is often discussed whether the 
poems of Phyllis Wheatley are of literary merit or 
simply curiosities as the work of an African child. 
That this gifited one died in her early womanhood 
would lead us to feel that longer life might have left to 
the world poems of greater strength and beauty. Yet, 
scan as often as we will or may the verses of Phyllis 
Wheatley, we claim for her the true poetic fire. In the 
poem to the Right Honorable the Earl of Dartmouth, 
the perfect rhythm, the graceful courtesy of thought, the 
burning love for freedom capture the heart. The 
"Farewell to America," the " Tribute to New England," 
have a sweetness and grace, a sprightliness and cheer 
all their own. Another proof of the genius of this 
young poetess may be found in the poem beginning, 
" Your Subjects Hope, Dread Sire." How these verses 
must have won the heart of His Most Excellent 
Majesty the King ! what a flood of sympathy must 
have gone out to this young maiden in bondage, who 
could forget her sorrows in his joy ! 

A narrative by Gustavus Vassa, published October 
2d, 1790, was the second volume written by an 
African made by force a resident of America. Prej- 
udice being so great, this volume, as was Phyllis 
Wheatly's, was first published in England. The 
second edition was welcomed in his American home. 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 57 

The writing of this little narrative, unlike the first, was 
accomplished under many hardships and difficulties, 
pursued by troubles and trials and dire calamities, yet 
it is a true and faithful account, written in a style that 
deserves respect. The following memorial to the 
English Parliament will give an idea of the style of 
the volume. 

To the Lords spiritual and temporal, and the Commons 
of the Parliament of Great Britain. 

My Lords and Gentlemen : — Permit me, with the 
greatest deference and respect, to lay at your feet this 
genuine narrative, the design of which is to excite in 
your august assemblies a sense of compassion for the 
miseries which the slave trade has entailed on my un- 
fortunate country. I am sensible I ought to entreat 
your pardon for addressing to you a work so wholly 
devoid of literary merit, but as the production of an 
unlettered African who is actuated by the hope of be- 
coming an instrument towards the relief of his suffering 
countrymen, I trust that such a man pleading in such 
a cause will be acquitted of boldness and presumption. 
May the God of Heaven inspire your hearts with 
peculiar benevolence on that important day when the 
question of abolition is to be discussed, when thousands 
in consequence of your decision are to look for happi- 
ness or misery. 

I am, my Lords and Gentlemen, 

Your most obedient and devoted humble servant, 

Gustavus Vassa. 



58 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

" I believe it is difficult," writes Vassa, " for those 
who publish their memoirs to escape the imputation of 
vanity. It is, therefore, I confess, not a little hazardous 
in a private and obscure individual, and a stranger 
too, to thus solicit the indulgent attention of the 
public. If then the following narrative does not 
prove sufficiently interesting to engage general at- 
tention, let my motive be some excuse for its publica- 
tion. I am not so foolishly vain as to expect from it 
either immortality or literary reputation. If it affords 
any satisfaction to my numerous friends, at whose 
request it has been written, or in the smallest degree 
promotes the interest of humanity, the end for which 
it was undertaken will be fully attained and every wish 
of my heart gratified. Let it therefore be remembered 
that in wishing to avoid censure, I do not aspire to 
praise." Says the Abbe Gregoire in his volume en- 
titled " An Inquiry Concerning the Intellectual and 
Moral Faculties, or a Literature of Negroes : " " It is 
proven by the most respectable authority that Vassa 
is the author of this narrative, this precaution being 
necessary for a class of individuals who are always dis- 
posed to calumniate Negroes to extenuate the crime 
of oppressing them." Says the good Abbe in con- 
clusion, " The individual is to be pitied who, after 
reading this narrative of Vassa's, does not feel for him 
sentiments of affection and esteem." 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 59 

The second class of writers were natives of America, 
living in liberal communities, such as could be found 
in the New England and some of the Middle States. 
" Walker's Appeal " is one of the most notable of 
these volumes, as it counselled retaliation. The author's 
reward was a price upon his head. Writers, such as 
William Wells Brown, of " Rising Sun " fame ; William 
C. Nell, with " Colored Patriots of the Revolution ; " 
Frederick Douglass, Francis Ellen Watkins Harper, 
with other like workers, labored for the Anti-Slavery 
cause. Inspired with a hope of greater privileges for 
themselves and emancipation for their brethren in the 
South, they wrote with a burning zeal which had 
much to do with securing the end desired. After this 
came twenty-five years of freedom with its scores of 
volumes, such as Williams' " History of the Negro 
Race in America," Fortune's " Black and White," 
Bishop Gaines's "African Methodism in the South," 
Albery Whitman's "Poems," Crummel's " Greatness 
of Christ," Penn's "Afro-American Press," Scarbor- 
ough's " Greek Grammar," Johnson's " Divine Logos," 
Bishop Payne's " History of African Methodism," 
Steward's " Genesis Reread." 

This era produced history, narrative, fiction, biog- 
raphy, poetry and scientific works varying in grade of 
excellence, but yet all of invaluable interest ; for in 
them is garnered that which must give inspiration to 



60 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

the youth of the race. Each had its effect of gaining 
the hearts of their enemy, winning respect and admi- 
ration, thus strengthening the bands of a common 
humanity. Simple and unadorned, these writings have 
a force and eloquence all their own that hold our 
hearts, gain our sympathies, fill us with admiration 
for the writers, for their persevering energy, their 
strong love of freedom, the impartiality of their reason- 
ing. With what sincerity they bear testimony to the 
good they find even in their enemies. With what 
clear judgment they state the difficulties that surround 
their path. With what firm faith they look ever to 
the Ruler of all nations to guide this one to justice. 
Yes, this race is making history, making literature : 
he who would know the Afro-American of this present 
day must read the books written by this people to 
know what message they bear to the race and to the 
nation. 

Of volumes of a later date all are more or less 
familiar. But we cannot forbear in closing to say a 
word of three recent race publications : " Iola, or The 
Shadows Uplifted," by Mrs. F. E. W. Harper, and 
"A Voice from the South, by a Black Woman of the 
South " (Mrs. A. J. Cooper). " Iola, or The Shadows 
Uplifted," is in Mrs. Harper's happiest vein. The scene 
is laid in the South, and carries us through trie vari- 
ous stages of race history from slavery to this present 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE M 

day. All of the open and settled que ; :i: as of the so- 
called Negro problem are brought out in this little 
volume. In the opening and closing of many : 

ters Mrs. Harper has risen to a height of eloquent 

pleading for the right that must win for the race many 
strong friends. Mrs A J. Cooper has done for her 
people a great service in collect ng her various e ; 
into book form. Together they make one of the 
strongest pleas for the race and sex of the writer that 
has ever appeared. En this little volume she proves 
that few of the race have sung because they could 
sing, but because the;- m . st teach a truth ; because of 
the circumstances that environed them they have 
always been, not primarily makers of literature, but 
preachers of righteousness. 

The third volume Aunt Lindy by Victoria 
Earle) Mrs. W. E. Matthews, the last to appear is ;-. 
beautiful little story and is leserving of careful study, 
emanating as it does from the pen of a represents: 
of the race, and giving a vivid and truthful aspect of 
one phase of Negro character. It shows most con- 
clusive';.- the need of the race to produce its own 
delineators of Ne^ro life. 

The scene is laid in Georgia. A Cotton Exchange 
has taken fire, the flames spreading to a neighboring 
hotel, many of the inmates are wrapped in the flames 
of the dread tyrant. C ne, ?. silver-haired stranger, with 



62 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

others is carried to neighboring homes for quiet and 
careful nursing. 

" Good Dr. Brown " thinks of no other nurse so 
capable as " Aunt Lindy." 

The old lady had been born in slavery, suffered all 
its woes, but in the joys of freedom had come to years 
of peace. 

She welcomed the wounded sufferer, laid him in a 
clean, sweet bed that she had kept prepared hoping 
that some day one of her own lost children might re- 
turn to occupy it. 

As she stands by his side suddenly some feature, 
some word of the suffering one, brings back the past. 
Peering closely into the face of the restless sleeper she 
exclaims, " Great Gawd ! it's Marse Jeems ! " 

Then begins the awful struggle in the mind of the 
poor freedwoman. The dreadful tortures of her life in 
bondage pass in review before memory's open portal. 
Shall vengence be hers ? Shall she take from him 
the chance of life ? Shall she have revenge, swift, 
sure and awful ? 

In these beautiful words Mrs. Matthews shows us 
the decision, how the loving forgiveness of the race, as 
it has always done, came out more than conqueror : 

" Soon from the portals of death she brought him, for 
untiringly she labored, unceasingly she prayed in her 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 63 

poor broken way ; nor was it in vain, for before the 
frost fell the crisis passed, the light of reason beamed 
upon the silver-haired stranger, and revealed in mystic 
characters the service rendered by a former slave — 
Aunt Lindy. 

" He marvelled at the patient faithfulness of these 
people. He saw but the Gold — did not dream of the 
dross burned away by the great Refiner's fire." 

In this little story, and especially in its sequel, Mrs. 
Matthews has given a strong refutation of the charges 
made against the race by Maurice Thompson in his 
" Voodoo Prophecy," where he makes the poet of wild 
Africa to say : 

" A black and terrible memory masters me, 
The shadow and substance of deep wrong. 

I hate you, and I live to nurse my hate, 

Remembering when you plied the slaver's trade 

In my dear land How patiently I wait 

The day, 
Not far away, 
When all your pride shall shrivel up and fade ! 

As you have done by me so will I do 
By all the generations of your race." 



64 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 

Only the race itself knows its own depth of love, 
its powers of forgiveness. In the heart of this race, if 
the American nation will only see it so, they have the 
truest type on earth of forgiveness as taught by the 
Redeemer of the world. 

This blood-bought treasure, bought with a Saviour's 
love, a nation's dreadful agony, is yet spurned and 
trampled on by professed followers of the meek and 
lowly Jesus. 

As we remember that the one novel written in 
America that captured the hearts of the world sung 
the wrongs of this people ; that the only true American 
music has grown out of its sorrows ; that these notes 
as sung by them melted two continents to tears ; shall 
we not prophesy of this race that has so striven, for 
whom John Brown has died, with whom one of Mas- 
sachusetts' noblest sons felt it high honor to lie down 
in martial glory, to whom a Livingstone bequeathed 
to their ancestors in the dark continent that heart that 
in life beat so truly for them ? Shall we not prophesy 
for them a future that is commensurate with the faith 
that is in them ? 

LIST OF AFRO-AMERICAN PUBLICATIONS. 

Phyllis Wheatley's Poems, 1773. 

Narrative, by Ouladal Ecquino or Gustavus Vassa. 

Walker's Appeal. 

Light and Truth, Lewis, Boston, 1844. 

Whitfield's Poems, 1846. 

Martin Delaney's Origin of Races. 



AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 65 

My Bondage and Freedom, Frederick Douglass, 1852. 

Autobiography of a Fugitive Negro, 1855. 

Twenty Years a Slave, Northrup, 1859. 

Rising Son and Black Man, William Wells Brown. 

William C. Nell. Colored Patriots of the Revolution. 

Tanner's Apology for African Methodism. 

Still's Underground Railroad. 

Colored Cadet at West Point, Flipper. 

Music and Some Highly Musical People. 

My Recollections of African Methodism, Bishop Wayman. 

First Lessons in Greek, Scarborough. 

Birds of Aristophanes, Scarborough. 

History of the Black Brigade, Peter H. Clark. 

Higher Grade Colored Society of Philadelphia. 

Uncle Tom's Story of His Life, by Henson. 

Greatness of Christ. Black Woman of the South. 

Future of Africa, Alexander Crunnell, D. D. 

Not a Man, and Yet a Man, Albery Whitman. 

Mixed Races, J. P. Sansom. 

Recollections of Seventy Years, Bishop D, A. Payne, D. D. 

Memoirs of Rebecca Steward, by T. G. Steward. 

In Memoriam. 

Catherine S. Beckett, Rev. L. J. Coppin. 

A Brand Plucked from the Fire, Mrs. Julia A. J. Foote. 

Thoughts in Verse, George C. Rovve. 

Cyclopaedia of African Methodism, Bishop Wayman. 

Night of Affliction and Morning of Recovery, J. H. Magee. 

The Negro of the American Rebellion, William Wells Brown. 

African Methodism in the South, or Twenty-five Years of Freedom, 
Bishop Wesley J. Gaines. 

Men of Mark, Wm. J. Simmons, D. D. 

Afro-American Press, I. Garland Penn. 

Lynch Law, Iola. (Ida B. Wells.) 

Women of Distinction, L. A. Scruggs, M. D. 

Genesis Reread ; Death, Flades and the Resurrection, T. G. Stew- 
ard, D. D. 

Corinne, Mrs. Harvey Johnson. 

A Voice from the South, by a Black Woman of the South, Mrs. A. J. 
Cooper. 

Two volumes written by whites, yet containing personal writings by 
the Negro Race. 

A Tribute to the Negro. 



66 AFRO-AMERICAN LITERATURE. 



An Inquiry Concerning the Moral and Intellectual Faculties, or a 

Literature of the Negroes, by Abbe Gregoire. 
The Cushite, Dr. Rufus L. Perry. 
Noted Negro Women, Majors. 
"Aunt Lindy," Victoria Earle. 

Tuskegee Lectures, Bishop B. T. T. Tanner, D. D. 
The Rise and Progress of the Kingdoms of Light and Darkness, or the 

Reigns of the Kings Alpha and Abaden, by Lorenzo D. Blackson. 
History of the Negro Race in America, Geo. Williams. 
History of the A. M. E. Z. Church. 
History of the First Presbyterian Church, Gloucester. 
History of St. Thomas' Protestant Episcopal Church, Wm. Douglass. 
History of the A. M. E. Church, D. A. Payne. 
Black and White, T. Thomas Fortune. 
Liberia, T. McCants Stewart. 
Bond and Free, Howard. 
Poems, Novel Iola, Mrs. F. E. W. Harper. 
Morning Glories (Poems), Mrs. Josephine Heard. 
Negro Melodies, Rev. Marshall Taylor, D. D. 
The New South, D. A. Straker. 
Life of John Jasper, by himself. 
Church Polity, Bishop H. M. Turner. 
Digest of Theology, Rev. J. C. Embry, D. D. 
Sense and Method of Teaching, W. A. Williams. 
Brother Ben, Mrs. Lucretia Coleman. 
The Divine Logos, H. T. Johnson, D. D. 

The Relation of Baptized Children to the Church, L. J. Coppin, D. D. 
Domestic Education and Poems, D. A. Payne. 
The Negro in the Christian Pulpit, Bishop J. W. Hood. 

We should be glad if authors would send us the names of omitted 
volumes to be used in a possible future edition. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 



Every age and clime has been blessed with sweet 
singers, both in song and verse. Many women have 
attained to rare excellence in each of these lofty voca- 
tions. Among modern songsters Jenny Lind, Patti 
and Parepa have won golden laurels. In verse Eliza- 
beth Barrett Browning stands pre-eminent. She not 
only honored her own English island home, but sunny 
Italy, the land of her adoption, has been purified and 
sweetened by the power of her verse. And with rare 
appreciation and devotion has this land of poetry and 
art showered honors on this sweet singer. 

That we, too, of the African race have equally shared 
in the gift of the muses, having had sweet singers born 
among us, I have chosen for my theme, " The Afro- 
American Woman in Verse." 

Have we not had among us Elizabeth Greenfield, 
" The Black Swan," and have we not now Madame 
Selika, Flora Batson, Madame Jones and Madame 
Nellie Brown Mitchell ? Crowned heads, as well as 
the uncrowned populace, have delighted to do honor 
to many of the sweet singers of our race. And have 
not two continents hung in breathless silence on 

(67) 



68 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

the melody floating heavenward from the lips of our 
Jubilee Singers ? 

That we have also among us those with rare talent 
for verse we hope to prove in the limits of this short 
article. 

During the year 1761 there sailed from Africa for 
America a slave ship. Among its passengers was a 
little girl, then seven or eight years of age. The 
following is from Williams' " History of the Negro 
Race : " " She was taken, with others, to the Boston 
slave market. There her modest demeanor and intel- 
ligent countenance attracted the attention of Mrs. John 
Wheatley, who purchased her. It was her intention to 
instruct the child in ordinary domestic duties, but she 
afterward changed her mind and gave her careful train- 
ing in book knowledge. The aptness of the child was 
a surprise to all who came in contact with her. In 
sixteen months from her arrival she had learned the 
English language so perfectly as to be able to read the 
most difficult portions of Scripture with ease, and 
within four years she was able to correspond intelli- 
gently. She soon learned to read and even translate 
from the Latin. One of Ovid's tales was her first 
attempt. It was published in Boston and England and 
called forth much praise. Pious, sensitive and affec- 
tionate by nature, Phyllis soon became endeared not 
only to the family to whom she belonged, but to a 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 69 

large circle of friends. Mrs. Wheatley was a benev- 
olent woman, and took great care of Phyllis, both of 
her health and education. Emancipated at the age 
of twenty, she was taken .to Europe by a son of Mrs. 
Wheatley." . . " She was heartily welcomed by 

the leaders of society of the British metropolis, and 
treated with great consideration. Under all the trying 
circumstances of social life among the nobility and 
rarest literary genius of London, this redeemed 
child of the desert coupled to a beautiful modesty 
the extraordinary powers of an incomparable conver- 
sationalist. She carried London by storm. Thought- 
ful people praised her, titled people dined her, and 
the press extolled the name of Phyllis Wheatley, the 
African poetess. ... In 1773 she gave a volume 
of poems to the world. It was published in London. 
It was dedicated to the Countess of Huntington, with 
a picture of the poetess and a letter of recommenda- 
tion, signed by the Governor and Lieutenant-Governor 
of Boston. In 1776 she addressed a poem to George 
Washington, which pleased the old warrior very much. 
Unfortunately no copy of this poem can be found at the 
present date." In a letter, however, he wrote to Joseph 
Reed, bearing date of the 10th of February, 1776, 
from Cambridge, Washington refers to it. He says : 
" I recollect nothing else worth giving you the trouble 
of, unless you can be amused by reading a letter and 



70 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

poem addressed to me by Miss Phyllis Wheatley. In 
searching over a parcel of papers the other day, in 
order to destroy such as were useless, I brought it to 
light again. At first, with a view of doing justice to 
her poetical genius, I had a great mind to publish the 
poem ; but not knowing whether it might not be con- 
sidered rather as a mark of my own vanity than a 
compliment to her, I laid it aside till I came across it 
again in the manner just mentioned." 

This gives the world an " inside " view of the brave 
old general's opinion of the poem and poetess; but 
the outside view, as expressed by Washington him- 
self to Miss Phyllis, is worthy of reproduction at this 
point. 

Cambridge, 28 February, 1776. 

Miss Phillis : — Your favor of the 26th of October 
did not reach my hands till the middle of December. 
Time enough you will say to have given an answer ere 
this. Granted. But a variety of important occurrences, 
continually interposing to distract the mind and with- 
draw the attention, I hope will apologize for the delay, 
and plead my excuse for the seeming but not real 
neglect. I thank you most sincerely for your polite 
notice of me in the elegant lines you enclosed; and 
however undeserving I maybe of such encomium and 
panegyric, the style and manner exhibit a striking 
proof of your poetical talents ; in honor of which, and 
as a tribute justly due to you, I would have published 
the poem had I not been apprehensive that, while I 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 71 

only meant to give the world this new instance of your 
genius, I might have incurred the imputation of vanity. 
This, and nothing else, determined me not to give it 
place in the public prints. 

If you should ever come to Cambridge, or near 

headquarters, I shall be happy to see a person so 

favored by the muses, and to whom nature has been 

so liberal and beneficent in her dispensations. 

I am, with great respect, your obedient, humble servant, 

George Washington. 

We regret our loss of this poem on account of the 
great general's modesty, but rejoice in the fact that the 
greater number of Miss Wheatley's poems were pub- 
lished in one volume, and given to the world. 

We will quote as largely as the limits of this paper 
will allow from this volume. 

A FAREWELL TO AMERICA. 

Adieu New England's smiling meads, 

Adieu the flowery plain ; 
I leave thine opening charms, O spring, 

To tempt the roaring main. 

For thee, Britannia, I resign 

New England's smiling fields, 
To view again her charms divine, 

What joy the prospect yields ! 

The love of freedom is beautifully expressed in a 
poem " To the Right Honorable William Earl of 



72 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

Dartmouth, His Majesty's Principal Secretary of State 
for North America." 

Hail, happy day, when, smiling like the morn, 
Fair Freedom rose New England to adorn : 
The northern clime beneath her genial ray, 
Dartmouth, congratulates thy blissful sway. 
Elate with hope her race no longer mourns, 
Each soul expands, each grateful bosom burns. 

No more America in mournful strain 

Of wrongs and grievance unredressed complain. 

Should you, my Lord, while you pursue my song, 
Wonder from whence my love of Freedom sprung, 
Whence flow these wishes for the common good, 
By feeling hearts best understood, 
I, young in life, by seeming cruel fate, 
Was snatched from Afric's fancied happy seat : 
What pangs excruciating must molest, 
What sorrow labor in my parents' breast? 
Steel'd was the soul and by no misery mov'd 
That from a father seized his babe beloved: 
Such, such my case. And can I then but pray 
Others may never feel tyrannic sway ? 

We cannot refrain from giving one more proof of 
the intelligence and genius of this young African 
poetess. It is dedicated to " The King's Most Ex- 
cellent Majesty," on the repeal of the Stamp Act 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 73 

Your subjects hope, dread Sire, 
The crown upon your brows may flourish long, 
And that your arm may in your God be strong. 
O may your sceptre num'rous nations sway, 
And all with love and readiness obey S 

But how shall we the British King reward ! 
Rule thou in peace, our father and our lord ! 
Midst the remembrance of thy favors past, 
The meanest peasant most admires the last — 
May George, belov'd by all the nations round, 
Live with the choicest constant blessings crowned ! 

At the death of Mrs. John Wheatley, Phyllis married 
John Peters, a grocer of Boston, of whom it is said, 
" he wore a wig, carried a cane, and quite acted out 
the ' gentleman.' ' But not being a gentleman, except 
in seeming, he soon grew jealous of the attention his 
wife received, and by his abuse and harsh treatment 
shortened her life, her death occurring December 
5th, 1784, in the thirty-first year of her life. She was 
the mother of one child. 

Esteemed by all and beloved by many, her influence 
upon the rapidly growing Anti-Slavery sentiment was 
considerable. Her works were pointed to as an unan- 
swerable argument in favor of the humanity of the 
Negro and his capability to receive culture. 

From 1784 until 1890, there has not been a vol- 
ume of poems written by a colored woman pub- 



74 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

lished in America. Several pamphlets and scattered 
poems have appeared from time to time in magazines 
and papers either devoted to the interest of the race or 
edited by colored men. But the race has never failed 
through all these long years of bondage to embalm in 
song and verse the beautiful thoughts that years of 
ceaseless oppression could not entirely banish from 
their minds. Through all the long years of slavery, 
through all the aftermath of the reconstruction era, the 
weird, plaintive melodies that welled up in their souls 
passed down from mother to child, and at last bore 
fruit when sung by the band of singers from the 
South land, the sweet-voiced Jubilee Singers, who sung 
a University * into existence. 

During the time of the publication of the Liberator, 
by William Lloyd Garrison, and at the time of the 
Anti-Slavery movement in Philadelphia, Sarah Forten, 
a woman of large culture and great refinement, wrote 
several poems. Some of these were published by Mr. 
Garrison in the Liberator. We present our readers 
the following ; 

THE GRAVE OF THE SLAVE. 

The cold storms of winter shall chill him no more, 
His woes and his sorrows, his pains are all o'er; 
The sod of the valley now covers his form, 
He is safe in his last home, he feels not the storm. 

* Fisk University, Tenn. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 75 

The poor slave is laid all unheeded and lone, 
Where the rich and the poor find a permanent home ; 
Not his master can rouse him with voice of command; 
He knows not and hears not his cruel demand ; 

Not a tear, nor a sigh to embalm his cold tomb, 
No friend to lament him, no child to bemoan ; 
Not a stone marks the place where he peacefully lies, 
The earth for the pillow, his curtain the skies. 

Poor slave, shall we sorrow that death was thy friend, 
The last and the kindest that heaven could send ? 
The grave of the weary is welcomed and blest ; 
And death to the captive is freedom and rest. 

ON THE ABANDONMENT OF PREJUDICE. 

We are thy sisters ; God has truly said 

That of one blood the nations he has made. 

O Christian woman, in a Christian land, 

Canst thou unblushing read this great command ? 

Suffer the wrongs which wring our inmost heart 
To draw one throb of pity on thy part ! 
Our skins may differ, but from thee we claim 
A sister's privilege and a sister's name. 

The "Grave of the Slave" became quite popular, and 
was set to music by Frank Johnson, the great negro 
musician of Philadelphia. 

The next woman we shall delight to honor is Mrs. 
Frances Ellen Watkins Harper. Mrs. Harper has 



76 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

been an Anti-Slavery lecturer in the days now past, 
and wrote several poems of great worth in that move- 
ment. Since the emancipation of the slaves she has 
been a lecturer in the temperance cause, and is now 
Superintendent in the National Woman's Temperance 
Union, and is also a director in the Woman's Con- 
gress, of which she has been one of the ablest mem- 
bers. 

Both as a writer of prose and poetry Mrs. Harper's 
talents are too well known to need eulogy at our hands. 
She is still among us, laboring with her pen, as her 
poem, entitled " The Dying Bondsman," and her con- 
tribution to the symposium on the Democratic return 
to power, both published in the A. M. E. Church Re- 
view, attest. She likewise contributed to the "Alumni 
Magazine " and many of the first-class weeklies pub- 
lished by our race. 

We give a brief quotation from her beautiful poem, 
entitled " Moses. A story of the Nile." 

THE DEATH OF MOSES —CHAPTER IX. 

His work was done ; his blessing lay 

Like precious ointment on his people's head, 

And God's great peace was resting on his soul. 

His life had been a lengthened sacrifice, 

A thing of deep devotion to his race, 

Since first he turned his eyes on Egypt's gild 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 77 

And glow, and clasped their fortunes in his hand 
And held them with a firm and constant grasp. 
But now his work was done ; his charge was laid 
In Joshua's hand, and men of younger blood 
Were destined to possess the land and pass 
Through Jordan to the other side. 

While the Anti-Slavery movement was in progress 
in Massachusetts, Miss Charlotte Forten, of Philadel- 
phia, now Mrs. Francis Grimke, of Washington, D. C, 
wrote several articles on Southern life. These found 
ready acceptance at the hands of the publishers of the 
"Atlantic Monthly." Miss Forten wrote often, both 
in prose and verse, but many very beautiful poems 
were never published. As the wife of Dr. Grimke she 
has been so occupied with work more directly con- 
fined to the church and locality, that nothing from her 
pen has appeared for some years. We have been 
honored, however, with a few lines from private col- 
lections of herself and friends. 

CHARLES SUMNER. 
{On seeing some pictures of the interior of his house)) 

Only the casket left ! The jewel gone, 
Whose noble presence filled these stately halls, 
And made this spot a shrine, where pilgrims came — 
Stranger and friend — to bend in reverence 



78 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

Before the great pure soul that knew no guile ; 
To listen to the wise and gracious words 
That fell from lips whose rare, exquisite smile 
Gave tender beauty to the grand, grave face. 
Upon these pictured walls we see thy peers — 
Poet, and saint, and sage, painter and king, — 
A glorious band ; they shine upon us still ; 
Still gleam in marble the enchanting forms 
Whereon thy artist eye delighted dwelt; 
Thy favorite Psyche droops her matchless face, 
Listening, methinks, for the beloved voice 
Which nevermore on earth shall sound her praise. 
All these remain — the beautiful, the brave, 
The gifted silent ones, — but thou art gone ! 
Fair is the world that smiles upon us now ; 
Blue are the skies of June, balmy the air 
That soothes with touches soft the weary brow. 

Mrs. M. E. Lambert scarce needs an introduction to 
the readers of the Review. The beautiful " Hymn to 
the New Year " is still singing its sweet message to 
us. The following triumphant strains are from her 
Easter hymn, as published in " St. Matthew's Journal," 
of which she is editor. 

CHRIST IS RISEN. 

Now is CJirist risen from the dead, and become the first 
fruits of them that slept. — I Cor. xv. 20. 

The Lord is risen ! In the early dawn 
Nature awakens to the glad surprise, 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 79 

And incense sweet from blossoming vale and lawn 
Fills the fair earth, and circles to the skies. 

O, Death, where thy terrors, thy darkness and 
gloom ! 

And where, evermore, is thy victory, O grave ! 
Behold, the Great Conqueror illumines the tomb, 

Where shall rest the redeemed He hath 
suffered to save. 
O'er sin hath He triumphed, o'er ruler and foe, 

O'er scorn and rude insult, o'er mockery and shame; 
Whose pain and whose anguish we never can know, 

But whose love through it all remaineth the same. 



'fc> J 



Alleluia! He is risen, the song has begun, 

Alleluia! Let the music reach each echoing shore, 

He is risen ! He is risen ! the theme of every tongue, 
To whom be endless glory, both now and evermore. 

Miss Cordelia Ray, one of the teachers of New 
York City, has won for herself a place in the front 
rank of our literary workers. A poem, entitled 
" Dante," contributed to a late issue of the Review, re- 
ceived well deserved praise, and many readers hope 
we shall again be charmed with offerings from the 
same pen. We regret our inability to quote suffi- 
ciently from poems sent us to do justice to the author's 
talent, but space forbids. 



80 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

COMPENSATION. 

Men who dare mighty deeds with dauntless will, 
Oft meet defeat, — not glorious victory ; 

But the uplifting souls to undreamed heights, 
May not of poorest laurels worthy be. 

There is a heroism born of pain, 

Whose recompense in noble impulse lies ; 

And sometimes tears that e'en from grief did flow 
Are changed to joy-drops in pathetic eyes. 

From out the din of mighty orchestras, 
The sweetest, purest tones are oft evolved ; 

So, from the discord of our restless lives, 

May come sweet harmony when all is solved. 

SUNSET PICTURE. 

The Sun-god was reclining on a couch of rosy shells, 
And in the foamy waters Nereids tinkled silver bells, 
That lent the soft air sweetness, like an echoed seraph- 
song, 
Floating with snow-flake hush the aisles of Paradise 
along. 

The Sun-god wove bright flowers, gold and purple in 

their hue, 
And to the smiling Nereids tenderly the blossoms 

threw ; 
The sapphire seas were shadowy, like an eye with 

dreamy thought, 
Where all the soul's mute rapture — a prisoned star — 

is caught. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 81 

The billows' rainbow splendor, like a strange enchant- 
ing dream, 

In fading, softened slowly to a trembling pearly 
gleam ; 

And soon the wondrous Sun-god, and the Nereids 
and the sea 

Had vanished ; one gray-tinted cloud alone remained 
for me. 

IN MEMORIAM. 

A leaf from Freedom's golden chapter fair, 

We bring to thee, dear father ! Near her shrine 

None came with holier purpose, nor was thine 

Alone the soul's mute sanction ; every prayer 

Thy captive brother uttered found a share 

In thy wide sympathy ; to every sign 

That told the bondman's need thou didst incline, 

No thought of guerdon hadst thou but to bear 

A loving part in Freedom's strife. To see 

Sad lives illumined, fetters rent in twain, 

Tears dried in eyes that wept for length of days — 

Ah ! was not that a recompense for thee ? 

And now, where all life's mystery is plain, 

Divine approval is thy sweetest praise. 

This beautiful verse appears in the opening pages of 
an exquisite memorial volume to the memory of 
Charles B. Ray, prepared by his loving daughters, 
Florence and H. Cordelia Ray, of New York City. 

Mrs. Mary Ashe Lee, a graduate of Wilberforce 
6 



82 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

University and wife of Bishop B. F. Lee, has, by her 
intelligence and sympathy, done much to inspire 
the students of that University with a love for broad 
culture, true refinement and high moral aims. Mrs. 
Lee has frequently added to the grace of public oc- 
casions at the college by her contributions of verse. 
One of the most beautiful, "Tawawa," commemorates 
the former Indian name of the present site of Wilber- 
force. We give a short extract : 

Where the hoary-headed winter 
Dwells among the leafless branches, 
Filling all the earth with whiteness, 
Freezing all the streams and brooklets, 
And with magic fingers working 
With his frostv threads of lace work 
Wraps the land in sweet enchantment. 



Thus the site of Wilberforce is, 
Wilberforce, the colored Athens. 
But another name she beareth, 
Which the Indians call Tawawa. 
I will tell you of Tawawa ; 
She the pride in all of Piqua, 
Pride of all the Shawnee nation, 
Child of love and admiration. 
In the bosom of the forest, 
Of Ohio's primal forest, 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 83 

Stood a wigwam, lone and dreary, 
With its inmates sick and weary ; 
Snow-drifts covered all the doorway ; 
Still the snow kept falling, falling, 
And the winds were calling, calling 
Round the wigwam of Winona. 
Far had gone the good Owego 
To the lakes in north Ohio, 
Looking for some ven'son for her : 
Scarce was everything that winter. 
Thus Winona, weeping, sighing, 
On her bed of deerskin lying, 
Pressing fondly to her bosom, 
With a mother's love, a blossom, 
Which the Spirit sent to cheer her, 
Sent to coo and nestle near her ; 
Cried Winona, in her anguish, 
For she feared the child would languish, 
"Oh, sweet Spirit, hear thy daughter ; 
Give us bread, as well as water ! " 
Then a vision passed before her, 
And its scenes did quite restore her, 
For she saw the dogwood blossom. 
Now she had her father's wisdom, 
So she knew that these white flowers 
Came to speak of brighter hours, 
Speak of sunshine and of plenty. 
"Ah, my wee, wee pickaninny, 
I will call you the white fiotuer, 
My Tawawa, whitest flower ! " 

Another poem by Mrs. Lee, entitled " Afmerica," 



84 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

and of a more recent date, contains many beautiful 
thoughts expressed in a most chaste and exquisite 
style. 

AFMERICA. 

Hang - up the harp ! I hear them say, 

Nor sing again an Afric lay, 

The time has passed ; we would forget — 

And sadly now do we regret 

There still remains a single trace 

Of that dark shadow of disgrace, 

Which tarnished long a race's fame 

Until she blushed at her own name; 

And now she stands unbound and free, 

In that full light of liberty. 

" Sing not her past ! " cries out a host, 

" Nor of her future stand and boast. 

Oblivion be her aimed-for goal, 

In which to cleanse her ethnic soul, 

And coming out a creature new, 

On life's arena stand in view." 

But stand with no identity ? 

All robbed of personality ? 

Perhaps, this is the nobler way 

To teach that wished-for brighter day. 

Yet shall the good which she has done 

Be silenced all and never sung? 

And shall she have no inspirations 

To elevate her expectations ? 

From singing I cannot refrain. 

Please pardon this my humble strain. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 85 

With cheeks as soft as roses are, 

And yet as brown as chestnuts dark, 

And eyes that borrow from a star 

A tranquil yet a brilliant spark ; 

Or face of olive with a glow 

Of carmine on the lip and cheek, 

The hair in wavelets falling low, 

With jet or hazel eyes that speak ; 

Or brow of pure Caucasian hue, 

With auburn or with flaxen hair 

And eyes that beam in liquid blue — 

A perfect type of Saxon fair. 

Behold this strange, this well-known maid, 

Of every hue, of every shade ! 

• •••• 

Oh ye, her brothers, husbands, friends, 
Be brave, be true, be pure and strong ; 
For on your manly strength depends 
Her firm security from wrong. 
O ! let your strong right arm be bold, 
And don that lovely courtesy, 
Which marked the chevaliers of old. 
Buttress her home with love and care, 
Secure her those amenities 
Which make a woman's life most dear. 
Give her your warmest sympathies, 
Thus high her aspirations raise 
For nobler deeds in coming days. 

A beautifully bound volume of poems has recently 
appeared under the authorship of Mrs. Josephine 



86 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

Heard. The charm of the fair author's personality- 
runs through these verses full of poetic feeling, bright 
and sparkling. And yet the closing verse holds our 
memory longest, and in our own humble judgment 
is the gem of the collection. 

AN EPITAPH. 

When I am gone, 

Above me raise no lofty stone 

Perfect in human handicraft, 

No upward pointing, gleaming shaft. 

Say this of me, and I shall be content, 

That in the Master's work my life was spent; 

Say not that I was either great or good, 

But, Mary like, she hath done what she could. 

From time to time there have appeared within the 
columns of the A. M. E. Review, Christian Recorder, 
Ringwoods' Journal, The Monthly Review, New York 
Age, Our Women and Children, and Howard's Maga- 
zine, poems of exquisite beauty. From these we 
quote, here and there, a gem serene. 

APRIL. 



BY JOSEPHINE B. C. JACKSON. 



Robes of bright blue around her form are swaying, 
And in her bosom dewy violets lie ; 
While the warm sun rays on her girdle playing, 
Give it the rainbow's soft and varied dye. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 87 

Over the meadow where the grass is growing, 
She sprinkles early flowers of every hue; 
Weeping, she strews them, and the bright tears 

flowing, 
Bathe every leaflet with a shining dew. 

With stately step, and crowned with crimson roses 
She comes ; and sighing, April bows her head ; 
Then May the white lids on the sweet eyes closes, 
And lays fair April with her flowers — dead. 
Jacksonville, III. 

FLEETING YEARS. 

Swiftly beyond recall, 

The years are fleeting fast ; 
The brittle threads of time, 

Will gently break at last. 
O man of wisdom, canst thou tell, 
Why human hearts love here to dwell? 

Is it because earth yields 

So many treasures rare? 
Is it because life gives 

So many pleasures fair? 
Cease, doubting soul ; it may be fate 
That bids thee through the years to wait. 

Bright flowers and pricking thorns 

Bestrew this life's highway, 
Where weary feet still tread 

The changing paths of day. 
But there is bliss for all the tears 
That seem to dim the fleeting years. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

We know, beyond the veil, 

There is some hidden joy; 
'Tis worth this life to live, 

That we may then employ 
Our trembling lips, in praise sublime, 
Beyond the boundless space of time. 

And shall we then despise 

The day of smallest things? 
Ah, no! these souls of ours 

Shall soon on angel's wings 
Be borne aloft, when years shall cease, 
To rest in perfect joy and peace. 

FRANCIS A. PARKER. 

Hamilton, Bermuda. 

AT BAY ST. LOUIS. 



BY MISS ALICE RUTH MOORE. 



Soft breezes blow, and swiftly show, 
Through fragrant orange branches parted, 
A maiden fair, with sun-flecked hair 
Caressed by arrows, golden darted. 
The vine-clad tree holds forth to me 
A promise sweet of purple blooms, 
A chirping bird, scarce seen, but heard, 
Sings dreamily, and sweetly croons, 
At Bay St. Louis. 

The hammock swinging, idly singing, lissome, nut- 
brown maid 
Swings gaily, freely, to and fro. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 89 

The curling, green-white waters, casting cool, clear 

shade, 
Rock small, shell boats that go 
In circles wide, or tug at anchor's strain, 
As though to skim the sea with cargo vain, 
At Bay St. Louis. 

The maid swings slower, slower to and fro, 
And sunbeams kiss gray, dreamy half-closed eyes ; 
Fond lover creeping on with footsteps slow, 
Gives gentle kiss, and smiles at sweet surprise. 



The lengthening shadows tell that eve is nigh, 
And fragrant zephyrs cool and calmer grow, 
Yet still the lover lingers, and scarce-breathed sigh 
Bids the swift hours to pause, nor go, 
At Bay St. Louis. 

THOUGHTS ON RETIRING. 



BY LUCY HUGHES BROWN. M. D. 



Oh Lord, the work thou gavest me 
With this day's rising sun, 
Through faith and earnest trust in Thee, 
My Master, it is done. 

And ere I lay me down to rest, 
To sleep — perchance for aye — 
I'd bring to thee at Thy request 
A record of the day. 



90 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

And while I bring it willingly 
And lay it at Thy feet, 
I know, oh, Saviour, certainly, 
That it is not complete. 

Unless Thy power and grace divine, 
Upon what I have wrought, 
Shall in its glorious fulness shine, 
Oh Lord, the work is naught. 

A RETROSPECT. 



BY L. H. BROWN, M. D. 



Oh God, my soul would fly away 
Were it not fettered by this clay ; 
I long to be with Thee at rest, 
To lean in love upon Thy breast. 

Here in this howling wilderness, 
With enemies to curse, not bless, 
I feel the need of Thy strong hand 
To guide me to that better land. 

How oft, oh God, I feel the sting 

Of those whose evil tongues would wring 

The heart of any trusting one 

As did the Jews to Thy dear Son. 

Yet in this hour of grief and pain, 
Let me not curse and rail again ; 
But meek in prayer, Lord, let me go 
And say, " They know not what they do." 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 91 

Lord, when this hard-fought battle's o'er, 
And I shall feel these stings no more, 
Then let this blood-washed spirit sing 
Hosannah to my Lord and King. 

GOD'S CHILDREN— THE FATHERLESS. 



BY IDA F. JOHNSON. 



Speak softly to the fatherless, 

And check the harsh reply 
That sends the crimson to the cheek, 

The teardrop to the eye. 
They have the weight of loneliness 

In this rude world to bear ; 
Then gently raise the falling bud, 

The drooping floweret spare. 

Speak kindly to the fatherless — 

The lowliest of their band 
God keepeth as the waters 

In the hollow of his hand. 
'Tis sad to see life's evening sun 

Go down in sorrow's shroud ; 
But sadder still when morning's dawn 

Is darkened by a cloud. 

Look mildly on the fatherless; 

Ye may have power to wile 
Their hearts from sadden'd memory 

By the magic of a smile. 



92 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

Deal gently with the little ones ; 

Be pitiful, and He, 
The Friend and Father of us all, 

Shall gently deal with thee. 

A REST BEYOND. 



BY MISS KATIE D. CHAPMAN. 



If this world were all, and no 
Glorious thought of a Divine 
Hereafter did comfort me, then 
Life with too much pain were 

Fraught and misery. 
I should not care to live another 
Day, with burdened heart and naught 
To cheer my soul upon its lonely way, 

From year to year. 
So many cares beset me on my way; 
So many griefs confront me in the 
Road, how wretched I, no hope, 
No faith to-day, in Heaven 

and God. 
The friends I love, for whom my life 
Is spent, do oft misjudge and rob 
Me of their love. Ah, if I had 
No hope in Jesus, sent down from above ! 
Why should I care to stay in such 
A race ? far rather give the 
Bitter struggle o'er and die, 
Caring not to face what the 

Future hath in store. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 93 

But just beyond is Heaven's 
Eternal shore, a mansion 
Waiteth for each sincere soul, 
A blessed rest forever more 
Is at the goal. 

Of the history of these sweet singers we know but 
little. Of Miss Jackson, Miss Johnson, and Miss 
Chapman, naught but their song. Mrs. Frances A. 
Parker, we learn, purposes bringing out a pamphlet of 
her collected writings, bearing the title, " Woman's 

Noble Work." 

Mrs. Lucy Hughes Brown, the author of the two 
sweet poems, " Thoughts on Retiring " and " A Re- 
trospect," is a graduate from Scotia Seminary, N. C; 
later as the wife of Rev. David Brown, of the Presby- 
terian church, Wilmington, N. C, she was enabled to 
do much philanthropical work for her race. Mrs. 
Brown received the degree of M. D. from the Women's 
Medical College, Philadelphia, March, '94. 

Miss Alice Ruth Moore, through a complimentary 
editorial in the Woman's Era, we learn, is a Southerner 
by birth, and we feel that the Era has voiced our own 
sentiments in so cordially thanking the editor of the 
Monthly Reviezv for introducing to us this charming 
writer. 

During the year 1859, there was published in New 
York City, that Mecca of authors and editors, The 



94 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

Anglo- African, a magazine of merit. Its editor was 
Thomas Hamilton. An able corps assisted him in the 
work ; among them was Charles Ray, George B. 
Vashon, James McCune Smith, and other well-known 
literary men. From this magazine we have culled the 
two closing poems of this paper. They rank well with 
the writers of this present generation. Mrs. Harper 
was then in her youth. Grace Mapps belonged to a 
family noted for its acquirements in music, literature 
and art. Her aunt, Mrs. Grace Douglass, wrote a most 
beautiful tract that was published in the history of the 
First African Presbyterian Church, of Philadelphia. 
Her cousin, Sarah M. Douglass, taught for over fifty 
years most successfully the preparatory department of 
the Philadelphia Institute for Colored Youth. Miss 
Mapps, also, for several years, taught as a member of 
the faculty of the same institution, now presided over 
so ably by Mrs. Fanny J. Coppin, wife of Dr. Levi 
Coppin, of the A. M. E. Church. 

GONE TO GOD. 



MRS. F. E. W. HARPER. 



Finished now 7 the weary throbbing, 
Of a bosom calmed to rest ; 
Laid aside the heavy sorrows, 
That for years upon it prest. 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 05 

All the thirst for pure affection, 
All the hunger of the heart, 
All the vain and tearful cryings, 
All forever now depart. 

Clasp the pale and faded fingers, 
O'er the cold and lifeless form ; 
They shall never shrink and shiver, 
Homeless in the dark and storm. 

Press the death-weights calmly, gently, 
O'er the eyelids in their sleep ; 
Tears shall never tremble from them, 
They shall never wake to weep. 

Close the silent lips together, 
Lips once parted with a sigh ; 
Through their sealed moveless portals, 
Ne'er shall float a bitter cry. 

Bring no bright and blooming flowers, 
Let no mournful tears be shed, 
Funeral flowers, tears of sorrow, 
They are for the cherished dead. 

She has been a lonely wanderer, 
Drifting on the world's highway ; 
Grasping with her woman's nature 
Feeble reeds to be her stay. 

God is witness to the anguish 
Of a heart that's all alone : 



96 THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 

Floating - blindly on life's current, 
Only bound unto His throne. 

But o'er such Death's solemn ano-el 
Broodeth with a sheltering wing; 
Till the helpless hands, grown weary, 
Cease around earth's toys to cling. 

Then kind hands will clasp them gently, 
On the still and aching breast ; 
Softly treading by they'll whisper 
Of the lone one gone to rest. 

LINES. 



BY GRACE A. MAPPS. 



Oh harvest sun, serenely shining 

On waving fields and leafy bowers, 
On garden wall and latticed vine 

Thrown brightly as in by-gone hours; 
Oh ye sweet voices of the wind, 

Wooing our tears, in angel tones ; 
Friends of my youth, shall I not weep ? 

Ye are still here, but they are gone. 

I see the maples, tossing ever 

Their silvery leaves up to the sky ; 
Still chasing o'er the old homestead's walls 

The trembling light, their shadows fly. 
Familiar forms and gentle faces 

Once glanced beneath each waving bough, 
And glad tones rung : shall I not weep 

That all is lone and silent now ? 



THE AFRO-AMERICAN WOMAN IN VERSE. 97 

Nay, for like heavenly whispers stealing, 

Conies now this memory divine, 
Where thy clear beams, Oh sun of autumn, 

Through the stained windows richly shine; 
A solemn strain, the organ blending, 

Like a priest's voice, its glorious chord, 
Is on the charmed air ascending ; 

" Come, let us sing unto the Lord." 

And while the earth, year after year, 

Puts all her golden glory on, 
And like it, God's most holy love 

Comes now, with every morning's dawn, 
" Singing unto the Lord," I love, 

With all the, hosts that speak His praise. 
I may not walk the earth alone, 

Nor sorrow for departed days. 

I know the friends I loved so well, 

Through the years of their life-long race, 
Lifted sweet eyes of faith to God, 

And now they see His blessed face. 
Thou, Lord, forever be my song, 

And I'll not weep for days gone by ; 
But give Thee back each hallowed hour, 

A. seed of immortality. 

Here and there, from this garden of poesy, we have 
culled a blossom ; but how many gardens of beauty 
have we not looked upon ? And yet, we must close, 
knowing " the half hath not been told." 

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OUR WOMEN IN JOURNALISM. 



The heredity and environment of women has for 
many ages circumscribed them to a certain routine 
both of work and play. In this century, sometimes 
called the " Nineteenth Century," but often the 
" Women's Century," there has been a yielding of the 
barriers that surround her life. In the school, the 
church, the state, her value as a co-operative is being 
widely discussed. The co-education of the sexes, 
the higher education of woman, has given to her life a 
strong impetus in the line of literary effort. Perhaps 
this can be more strongly felt in the profession of 
journalism than in any other. On every hand jour- 
nals published by women and for women are multiply- 
ing. The corps of lady writers employed on most of 
our popular magazines and papers is quite as large as 
the male contingent and often more popular if not as 
scholarly. We can realize what this generation would 
have lost if the cry of" blue stocking" had checked 
the ambition of our present women writers. The 
women of our race have become vitalized by the 
strong literary current that surrounds them. The 
(98) 



OUR WOMEN IN JOURNALISM. 99 

number is daily increasing of those who write com- 
mendably readable articles for various journals pub- 
lished by the race. There was a day when an Afro- 
American woman of the greatest refinement and culture 
could aspire no higher than the dressmaker's art, or later 
who would rise higher in the scale could be a teacher, 
and there the top round of higher employment was 
reached. But we have fallen on brighter days, we 
retain largely the old employments and have added to 
this literary work and its special line of journalistic 
effort. 

New lines are being marked out by us ; notice 
"Aunt Lindy " and " Dr. Sevier " in the Review. The 
success of this line of effort is assured and we hail it 
with joy. Our women have a great work to do in 
this generation ; the ones who walked before us could 
not do it, they had no education. The ones who 
come after us will expect to walk in pleasant paths of 
our marking out. Journalism offers many inducements, 
it gives to a great extent work at home ; sex and race 
are no bar, often they need not be known ; literary 
work never employs all one's time, for we cannot write 
as we would wash dishes. Again, our quickness of per- 
ception, tact, intuition, help to guide us to the popular 
taste ; her ingenuity, the enthusiasm woman has for all 
she attempts, are in her favor. Again, we have come on 
the world of action in a century replete with mechan- 



100 OUR WOMEN IN JOURNALISM. 

ical means for increasing efficiency ; woman suffrage is 
about to dawn. Our men are too much hampered by 
their contentions with their white brothers to afford to 
stop and fight their black sisters, so we slip in and glide 
along quietly. We are out of the thick of the fight. 
Lookers-on in Venice, we have time to think over our 
thoughts, and carry out our purposes ; we have every- 
thing to encourage us in this line of effort, and so far I 
have found nothing to discourage an earnest worker. 
All who will do good work can get a hearing in our 
best Afro-American journals. In the large cities espe- 
cially of the North we have here and there found open- 
ings on white journals. More will come as more are 
prepared to fill them and when it will have become no 
novelty to be dreaded by editor or fellow-reporters. 
To women starting in literary work I would say, Write 
upon the subjects that lie nearest your heart; by that 
means you will be most likely to convince others. Be 
original in title, conception and plan. Read and 
study continuously. Study the style of articles, of 
journals. Discuss methods with those who are able 
to give advice. Every branch of life-work is now be- 
ing divided into special lines and the literary field 
shares in the plan marked out by other lines of work ; 
so much is this the case that the name of Cable, or 
Tourgee, or Haygood, suggests at once southern 
Negro life; Edward Atkinsson, food; Prof. Shaler, 



OUR WOMEN IN JOURNALISM. 101 

scientific research, and soon ad infinitum. Our literati 
would do well to follow the same plan ; it may have its 
disadvantages, but it certainly has also its advantages. 
To those who aspire to become journalists we only give 
the old rule, enter the office, begin at the lowest 
round and try to learn each department of work well. 
Be thankful for suggestions and criticism, make 
friends, choose if possible your editor, your paper, be 
loyal to both, work for the interest of both. See that 
your own paper gets the best, the latest news. If a 
new idea comes to you, even if it is out of your line of 
work, talk over it with him. Study papers, from the 
design at the top, the headings, the advertisements, 
up to the editorials. Have an intelligent comprehension 
of every department of work on the paper. As a reporter 
I believe a lady has the advantage of the masculine 
reporter in many respects. She can gain more readily 
as an interviewer access to both sexes. Women know 
best how to deal with women and the inborn chivalry 
of a gentleman leads him to grant her request when a 
man might have been repulsed without compunction. 
In seven years' experience as an interviewer on two 
white papers I have never met with a refusal from 
either sex or race. If at first for some reason they de- 
clined, eventually I gained my point. Another pleas- 
ant feature of this as of all other employment is its 
comradeship; one can always find a helper in a fellow- 



102 OUR WOMEN IN JOURNALISM. 

worker. I have received some such kind, helpful letters; 
one from Mrs. Marion McBride, President of the New 
England Women's Press Association comes to my 
mind; another from Mrs. Henry Highland Garnet of 
N. Y. Here and there pleasant tokens of esteem and 
co-operation greet me. I have been thanked heartily 
in many strange places, by many new and unaccus- 
tomed voices, for helpful words spoken in the long 
ago. To the women of my race, the daughters of an 
an oppressed people, I say a bright future awaits you. 
Let us each try to be a lamp in the pathway of the co- 
laborer a guide to the footsteps of the generation that 
must follow. Let us make, if we can, the rough places 
smooth; let us write naught that need cause a blush to 
rise to our cheek even in old age. Let us feel the 
magnitude of the work, its vast possibilities for good 
or ill. Let us strive ever not to be famous, but to be 
wisely helpful, leaders and guides for those who look 
eagerly for the daily or weekly feast that we set be- 
fore them. 

Doing this, our reward must surely come. And 
when at some future day we shall desire to start a 
women's journal, by our women, for our women, we 
will have built up for ourselves a bulwark of strength; 
we will be able to lead well because we have learned 
to follow. May these few words, allied to the 
bright and shining examples of such women as Mrs. 



OUR WOMEN IN JOURNALISM. 



103 



Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Mrs. Fanny Jackson 
Coppin, Mrs. Sara M. Douglass, and other consistent, 
industrious workers, serve as a stimulus to some 
one who is strong of will, but weak of purpose, or to 
another whose aspiration is to become a journalist, but 
who fears to launch her little bark on the waves of its 
tempestuous sea. 




OUR AFRO-AMERICAN REPRESENTATIVES AT 
THE WORLD'S FAIR. 

It was the earnest wish of the Afro-Americans that 
they should be given representation upon the National 
Committee of the World's Fair; in this they were 
sadly disappointed. A fair representation, however, 
was accorded them upon the State Boards. 

The first appointment was made by Governor Robert 
E. Pattison, of Pennsylvania. 

To Robert Purvis, of Philadelphia, was accorded the 
honor of being made a Commissioner for the State of 
Pennsylvania. Mr. Purvis is well past the threescore 
years and ten usually allotted to mortals of to-day. 
The death of the poet Whittier leaves him the only 
surviving member of the body of sixty persons that 
signed the Declaration of Sentiments of the National 
Committee, which met in Philadelphia fifty-nine years 
ago to found the American Anti-Slavery Society. The 
life-work of Robert Purvis has been the amelioration 
of the condition of the weaker race, to which he is 
allied by perhaps one-eighth a strain of blood. 

Left in comfortable circumstances by a wealthy 

father, with a brilliant education and large native talent, 

(104) 



AT THE WORLD'S FAIR. 105 

he has devoted his life to fighting the battles of Afro- 
Americans. Mr. Purvis has a face that even with ad- 
vanced years is yet strikingly strong and beautiful ; 
tall and commanding in stature, with most courtly 
manners, his presence adds grace and distinction to 
any body of which he is a member. His home life is 
like that of a refined and cultured member of the 
Society of Friends ; his present wife indeed being one 
of that sect. 

An intelligent family of children surround him in 
his old age, all being the offspring of his first wife, 
formerly a Miss Forten, of Philadelphia. One son, Dr. 
Charles Purvis, was for a number of years Surgeon-in- 
Chief of the Freedmen's Hospital, at Washington, 
D. C. 

Mr. Purvis' home is full of books, pictures and 
curios relative to the history of the race. The Uni- 
versity of Pennsylvania has dedicated an alcove to 
Anti-Slavery literature in its new library building, the 
alcove being named the Purvis Alcove. Mr. Purvis 
and Dr. Furness have given to the library many valu- 
able works, among them a complete edition of Wm. 
Lloyd Garrison's Liberator. Within these later years 
this venerable philanthropist has largely confined his 
labors to securing opportunities for intelligent members 
of the race in higher grades of work. 

The most valued possession of this great survivor 



106 OUR AFRO-AMERICAN REPRESENTATIVES 

of the Anti-Slavery days, is a painting of Cinque, the 
hero of the L'Amistead, painted by the artist, Jocelyn. 
Cinque, being an African captive thrust into slavery, 
captured the vessel and put the crew in irons, carried 
the vessel to England, and thus, through international 
law, secured his freedom. The Pennsylvania Historical 
Society, and the New Haven Historical Society, have 
both expressed a desire to become possessors of this 
valuable historical painting. 

" A Woman's Auxilliary Committee to represent the 
work of women through the State of Pennsylvania, was 
formed to work with the State Board. One of the first 
ladies appointed on this board, was Miss Florence A. 
Lewis, of Philadelphia. It can truly be said that Miss 
Lewis represents in her personality the symmetrical 
development and complete womanhood that it is pos- 
sible for the Afro- American woman to attain under 
favoring circumstances. 

"Born and raised in Philadelphia, she is one of that 
younger group of women who have made the most of 
the opportunities of a wide-awake northern city. Miss 
Lewis was graduated from the Institution for Colored 
Youth, and passed successfully the State examination 
for certificate to teach in the public schools. She 
taught in one of the Grammar schools for a number of 
years, at the same time doing literary work for several 



AT THE WORLD'S FAIR. 107 

papers. In course of time Miss Lewis found that she 
could profitably devote all her time to literature, and 
for the last five years she has been connected with the 
Philadelphia Press in the weekly edition, of which she 
conducts a department, besides contributing special 
work to the other editions. Miss Lewis is also con- 
nected with the magazine Golden Days, and writes 
over various signatures for newspapers and magazines 
in several cities. She is also one of the Advisory 
Board of the Citizens' National League, of which 
Judge Tourgee is the founder and President. 

" Bright, witty and interesting, Miss Lewis has a 
charm and refinement of manner that make her a 
worthy addition to Pennsylvania's ' Group of Noble 
Dames.' 

• •••••••• 

" The position on the Board of Woman Managers 
of the State of New York for the Columbian Ex- 
position was entirely unsought by Miss Imogene 
Howard. Her experience has been a very pleasant 
one thus far. Her special position on the board is as 
one of five of the ' Committee on Education.' 

" Joan Imogene Howard was born in the city of 
Boston, Mass. Her father, Edward F. Howard, is an 
old and well-known citizen of that city, and her 
mother, Joan L. Howard, now deceased, was a native 
of New York. She has one sister, Miss Adeline T. 



108 OUR AFRO-AMERICAN REPRESENTATIVES 

Howard, the principal of the Wormley School, Wash- 
ington, D. C, and one brother, E. C. Howard, M. D., 
a prominent physician in the city of Philadelphia. 

" Having a mother cultured, refined and intellectual, 
her earliest training was received from one well quali- 
fied to guide and direct an unfolding mind. At the age 
of fourteen, having completed the course prescribed in 
the Wells' Grammar School, Blossom street, Boston, 
she graduated with her class, and was one of the ten 
honor pupils who received silver medals. 

" Her parents encouraged her desire to pursue a 
higher course of instruction, and consequently after a 
successful entrance examination, she became a student 
at the ■ Girls' High and Normal School.' She was 
the first colored young lady to enter and, after a three 
years' course, to graduate from this, which was, at that 
time, the highest institution of learning in her native 
city. 

" A situation as an assistant teacher in Colored 
Grammar School No. 4 — now Grammar School No. 
8 1 — was immediately offered. Here she has labored 
ever since endeavoring to harmoniously develop the 
pupils of both sexes who have been committed to her 
care. 

" Many of her pupils have become men and women 
of worth, and hold positions of honor and trust. 

"For several years an evening school, which was 



AT THE WORLD'S FAIR. 109 

largely attended, and of which she was principal, was 
carried on in the same building. 

" As time advances more is required of all individuals 
in all branches of labor. Teaching is no exception, 
and in recognition of this she took a course in 
' Methods of Instruction ' at the Saturday sessions of 
the Normal College, of N. Y. She holds a diploma 
from this institution [1877], and thus has the privilege of 
signing ' Master of Arts ' to her name. This year 
[1892] still another step has been taken, for, after a 
three years' course at the University of the City of 
New York, she has completed the junior course in 
Educational History, Psychology, Educational Classics 
and Methodology. As a result of this she has had 
conferred upon her the degree of Master of Pedagogy." 

" Nothing but pleasant surprises await the people of 
America in getting acquainted with the ever increas- 
ing number of bright Afro-American men and women 
whose varied accomplishments and achievements 
furnish some of the most interesting episodes in news- 
paper literature. 

"Some months ago wide publicity was given to the 
brilliant sallies of wit and eloquence of a young Afro- 
American woman of Chicago in appealing to the Board 
of Control of the World's Columbian Exposition in 
behalf of the American Negro. The grave and matter- 



110 OUR AFRO-AMERICAN REPRESENTATIVES 

of-fact members of the Commission were at first 
inclined to treat lightly any proposition to recognize 
the Afro- American's claim to representation in the 
World's Fair management. They soon found, how- 
ever, that puzzling cross-questions and evasions awak- 
ened in this young woman such resources of repartee, 
readiness of knowledge and nimbleness of logic that 
they were amazed into admiration and with eager 
unanimity embraced her arguments in a resolution of 
approval, and strongly recommended her appointment 
to some representative position. The name of this 
bright lady is Mrs. Fannie Barrier Williams, and a 
closer knowledge of herself and history reveals the 
interesting fact that there is something more to her 
than ability to speak brilliantly. She was born in 
Brockport, N. Y., where her parents, Mrs. and the late 
A. J. Barrier, have been highly esteemed residents for 
nearly fifty years. Mrs. Williams is petite in size, and 
her face is one of rare sweetness of expression. In 
the pure idyllic surroundings of her home, in the quiet 
and refined village of Brockport, she had the very best 
school advantages. 

" She was graduated from the college department 
of the State Normal School very young and began 
at once to teach school. For about ten years she 
was a successful teacher in the public schools of 
Washington, D. C, and resigned only when she 



At THE WORLD'S FAIR. Ill 

became the wife of her present husband, Mr. S. 
Laing Williams, a well educated and ambitious young 
lawyer of the Chicago bar. Mrs. Williams early 
evidenced a decided talent for drawing and painting. 
While teaching in Washington she diligently exhausted 
every opportunity to develop her artistic instincts. She 
became a student in the studios of several Washington 
artists and further studied to some extent in the New 
England Conservatory and private studios of Boston. 
Her cleverest work has been that of portraits. At the 
New Orleans Exposition some years ago her pieces 
on exhibition were the theme of many favorable criti- 
cisms by visiting artists. In conversation Mrs. Wil- 
liams is delightfully vivacious and pungent, and displays 
an easy familiarity with the best things in our language. 

" With no cares of children she lives an active life. 
She is secretary of the Art Department of the 
Woman's Branch of the Congress Auxiliaries of the 
World's Columbian Exposition. This Committee has 
the active and honorary membership of the most dis- 
tinguished women artists of the world, and Mrs. 
Williams enjoys the esteem of all who know her in 
this highly important branch of the World's Fair. 

" She is also an active member of the ' Illinois 
Woman's Alliance,' in which she serves as chairman 
of the Committee on ' State Schools for Dependent 
Children.' She is likewise actively interested in the 



112 OUR AFRO-AMERICAN REPRESENTATIVES 

splendid work of the Provident Hospital and Training 
School, perhaps the most unique organization for self- 
helpfulness ever undertaken by the colored people of 
the country. 

"Mrs. Williams' home life is unusually charming and 
happy. The choice of pictures and an ample library 
give an air of refinement and culture to her pretty 
home. She and her husband are active members of 
All Souls' Unitarian Church, of Chicago, and the 
Prudence Crandall Study Club. Mrs. Williams mani- 
fests an intelligent interest in all things that pertain 
to the well-being of the Afro-Americans and never 
hesitates to speak or write when her services are 
solicited. Her wide and favorable acquaintance with 
nearly all the leading Afro-American men and women 
of the country, and her peculiar faculty to reach and 
interest influential men and women of the dominant 
race in presenting the peculiar needs of her people, 
together with her active intelligence, are destined to 
make Mrs. Williams a woman of conspicuous use- 
fulness." 

Next to that of Mr. Robert Purvis, the most im- 
portant appointment made in connection with the race 
at the World's Fair is that of Hon. Hale G. Parker, 
Commissioner at Large. Mr. Parker is a citizen of 
St. Louis, Mo., but a native of Ripley, Ohio; he is 



AT THE WORLD'S FAIR. 113 

a son of John Percival Parker, proprietor and mana- 
ger of the Phoenix Foundry and Machine Works, 
the largest on the Ohio river between Cincinnati and 
Portsmouth. Mr. Hale is a graduate of Oberlin Col- 
lege, class of '73. He entered upon the field of educa- 
tional work after graduation, but a few years later de- 
termined upon the profession of law as his life-work. 
Graduating from the St. Louis Law School in '82, he 
was a few months later admitted to the bar. In connec- 
tion with the duties of his professional life, he has had 
charge of the introduction of the J. P. Parker patents 
in the South and West. Mr. Parker has proven one 
of the most energetic workers on the World's Fair 
Commission. He sat for the first time with the 
National Commission in September and voted for 
the $5,000,000 loan. 

Mr. J. E. Johnson, of Baltimore, held for several 
months a position as assistant upon the Government 
Board. Mrs. A. W. Curtis, of Chicago, held for a 
short time the position of " Secretary of Colored 
Interests of the World's Fair." 

The last appointment was that of Mrs. S. L. Wil- 
liams, New Orleans, to the Educational Committee of 
the State Board for the World's Fair. Mrs. Williams is 
the originator, president, secretary, and treasurer of 
an orphan asylum for girls. The institution was 
opened August 24, 1892, with the enrolment of 69 
8 



114 



AT THE WORLD'S FAIR. 



orphans. The organization in its one year of exist- 
ence has gathered a membership of 700, and re- 
ceived for support $1,755. Two entertainments are 
given yearly for its maintenance. The life of this 
noble woman is being given to the uplifting of the 
girlhood of the race that needs, perhaps, more than 
any other in all this fair land, the guidance and fos- 
tering care of such a noble, Christian motherhood. 




THE OPPOSITE. POINT OF VIEW. 

Home is undoubtedly the cornerstone of our be- 
loved Republic. Deep planted in the heart of civilized 
humanity is the desire for a resting place that may be 
called by this name, around which may cluster life- 
long memories. Each member of a family after a 
place is secured, helps to contribute to the formation 
of the real and ideal home. Men's and women's desires 
concerning what shall constitute a home differ largely, 
sex counting for much, past environment for more. 
Man desires a place of rest from the cares and vex- 
ations of life, where peace and love shall abide, where 
he shall be greeted by the face of one willing to con- 
form to his wishes and provide for his comfort and 
convenience — where little ones shall sweeten the 
struggle for existence and make the future full of 
bright dreams. 

Woman desires to carry into effect the hopes that 
have grown with her growth, and strengthened with her 
strength from childhood days until maturity ; love has 
made the path of life blend easily with the task that 
duty has marked out. Women picture their material 
home from its outer walls to the last graceful interior 

(115) 



116 THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 

decoration thousands of times before it becomes an 
accomplished fact. In imagination the children of 
their love have twined their arms around their necks, 
dropped kisses upon their lips and filled their ears with 
the most loving - name of mother. In this home of her 
dreams she has reigned queen of hearts, dispensing 
joy and peace to the dear ones who have placed their 
hearts in her keeping. Marriage constitutes the basis 
for the home; preceding this comes courtship; pre- 
ceding it, should have been, and we believe has been, a 
degree of love. It is largely the fashion of the world 
to laugh at first love, to give it in derision the appel- 
lation of calf or puppy love, but to a mother the 
knowledge that the warmest affection of her child's 
heart is passing into the keeping of another (it maybe 
for weal or it may be for woe) can never be a subject 
for mirth. Love is a reality; its influence may make 
life most worth living, or blast for time and eternity. 
Let us look at it as a mother must, as an entrance upon 
the Holy of Holies. The prevalent opinion concern- 
ing courtship is, that it is an era of deception. 

We differ from the accepted opinion. Remembering 
the environment that surrounds every courtship we 
must admit that it lends itself readily to deception, 
but that the parties interested desire to deceive we 
greatly doubt. The girl and her lover are each 
placed under the pleasantest circumstances; relieved 



THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 117 

of all care, going where they like, seeing the one they 
admire most, dressed in apparel that becomes them well, 
pleasing and desiring to be pleased, what wonder if 
both act more kindly to each other at such a time and 
under such auspices than they do towards the world 
that surrounds them, opposing perhaps their every 
desire. When I was a girl teaching a school in the 
suburbs of Philadelphia, one unlettered but close mas- 
culine observer used to say of the men who stood in 
the above position, "Yes, they're lying, of course; but 
lying goes with courting." Another more refined 
feminine observer used to say earnestly, but with a sigh, 
"Honey, courting is mighty pretty business; but courting 
is no more like marrying than chalk is like cheese." Pos- 
sibly all my experienced readers will admit that court- 
ing is mighty pretty business, especially the making-up 
process that is so often gone through, and also think 
there was a grain of truth in the other sage observa- 
tions. And yet, to a certain extent, both were wrong ; 
it is simply that circumstances alter cases. 

Let us believe that the young people do not intend 
to deceive,-but that being happy, it is easy to try to 
make others happy. Simply having turned to the 
looking-glass of another's face a smiling countenance, 
they have been met with a smile. At the close of a suc- 
cessful courtship, comes marriage, the basis of which 
may be real love,or ambition in its various guises. Many 



118 THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 

wonder that so many people separate, my wonder is that 
so many remain together. Born in different places, 
reared differently, with different religious and political 
opinions, differing in temperament, in educational views, 
at every point, what wonder strife ensues. But we will 
consider in this paper the life of those who elect to 
remain together whether life is a flowery path or over- 
grown with briers and thorns. Now, first, here I must 
explain that I am about to look at the opposite side of 
a much discussed question. The pendulum will 
swing in this paper in the opposite direction to the 
one generally taken. 

The conservatives can take the median line with 
the pendulum at a standstill if they so desire. For sev- 
eral years, every paper or magazine that has fallen into 
our hands gave some such teaching as this: "The 
wife must always meet her husband with a smile." 
She must continue in the present and future married 
life to do a host of things for his comfort and conven- 
ience; the sure fate awaiting her failure to follow this 
advice being the loss of the husband's affection and 
the mortification of seeing it transferred to the 
keeping of a rival. She must stay at home, keep the 
house clean, prepare food properly and care for her 
children, or he will frequent the saloon, go out at 
night and spend his time unwisely at the least. These 
articles may be written by men or by women, but the 



THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. ,110 

moral is invariably pointed for the benefit of women ; 
one rarely appearing by either sex for the benefit of. 
men. This fact must certainly lead both men and 
women to suppose that women need this teaching 
most; now I differ from this view of the subject. In 
a life of some length and of close observation, having 
been since womanhood a part of professional life, both 
in teaching, preaching and otherwise, where one re- 
ceives the confidences of others, I have come to the 
conclusion that women need these teachings least. 

I have seen the inside workings of many homes ; I 
know there are many slatterns, many gossips and poor 
cooks; many who are untrue to marital vows; but on 
the whole, according to their means, their opportunities 
for remaining at home, the irritating circumstances 
that surround them (and of our women especially), 
tempted by two races, they do well. After due 
deliberation and advisedly I repeat that they (remem- 
bering the past dreadful environment of slavery) do well. 
Man as often as woman gives the keynote to the home- 
life for the day; whether it shall be one of peace or strife. 
The wife may fill the house with sweet singing, have the 
children dressed and ready to give a joyful greeting 
to the father, the breakfast might be fit to tempt an 
epicure, and yet the whole be greeted surlily by one 
who considers wife and home but his ricrhtful conven- 
ience. I may not be orthodox, but I venture to 



120 THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 

assert that keeping a clean house will not keep a man 
at home; to be sure it will not drive him out, but 
neither will it keep him in to a very large extent. 
And you, dear tender-hearted little darlings, that are 
being taught daily that it will, might as well know the 
truth now and not be crying your eyes out later. 

Dear Willie can go out at night, yes, a little while 
even every night, and not be going to the bad nor 
failing to do his duty. Now let me tell you an open 
secret and look about you where you live and see if I 
am not right. The men that usually stay in at night 
are domestic in their nature, care little for the welfare 
or approval of the world at large, are not ambitious, 
are satisfied with being loved, care nothing for being 
honored. The men who used when single to kiss the 
babies, pet the cat, and fail to kick the dog where they 
visited are the men who remain at home most when 
married. A man who aspires to social pre-eminence, 
who is ambitious or who acquires the reputation of 
being a man of judgment and knowledge, useful as a 
public man, will be often out at night even against his 
own desires, on legitimate business. By becoming a 
member of many organizations it may become nec- 
essary for him to spend most of his evenings out, sac- 
rificing his own will to the will of the many. Again, 
men after working at daily drudgery come home to their 
families, eat the evening meal, hear the day's doings, 



THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 121 

read the paper and then desire to meet with some 
masculine friends to discuss the topics of the day. 
The club, the church, the street corner or a chum's 
business place may be the meeting place. Bad men 
go out for evil purposes; to be sure, many men, social 
by nature, are tempted by the allurements of the 
saloon and the chance of meeting their boon compan- 
ions. But these men would do the same if they had 
no home, or whether it was clean or not. Wives 
should be kind, keep house beautifully, dress beautifully 
if they can; but after all this is accomplished their hus- 
bands will be away from home possibly quite as much 
for the above-given reasons. Women must not be 
blamed because they are not equal to the self-sacrifice 
of always meeting husbands with a smile, nor the wife 
blamed that she does not dress after marriage as she 
dressed before ; child-birth and nursing, the care of 
the sick through sleepless, nightly vigils, the exactions 
and irritations incident to a life whose duties are made 
up of trifles and interruptions, and whose work of 
head and heart never ceases, make it an impossibility 
to put behind them at all times all cares and smile 
with burdened heart and weary feet and brain. 

Small means, constant sacrifice for children prevent 
the replenishment of a fast dwindling wardrobe. Hus- 
bands and fathers usually buy what they need at least 
most mothers and wives will not even do that while 



122 THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 

children need anything. The great inducement for a 
woman to fulfil these commands is that she may re- 
tain her husband's love and not forfeit her place to a 
rival. Suppose some one should tell a man, " Now 
you must smile at your wife always, in her presence 
never appear grumpy, dress her in the latest style, and 
so on, or else she will transfer her affections to the 
keeping of another." What would be his reply? 
We all know. And yet women need love to live 
and be happy, are supposed to be most susceptible to 
love and flattery, and men therefore ought to fear this 
fate most, and the daily record teaches the fact if the 
magazine writers fail to do so. A good husband will 
do his duty even if the wife fails, as so many wives 
are doing to-day with bad husbands. The man who 
wants to lead a reckless life, will complain of his 
wife's bad housekeeping, extravagance, the children's 
noise or, if not blessed with offspring, still complains that 
this fact makes home, less interesting; but let me tell 
you, friend, it is all an excuse in nine cases out of ten. 
A husband's ill-doing is never taken as an excuse for 
a wife's turning bad, and why should a man be excused 
for doing wrong, if he has a bad wife ? If he be the 
stronger-minded one, especially. If a husband is a true 
one in any sense of the word, his transference of the 
kiss at the door from the wife to the firstborn that 



THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 123 

runs before her to greet him will not cause even a sigh 
of regret. 

Doing the best she can in all things will be appre- 
ciated by a true husband. The one remaining thought 
unmentioned is temper, the disposition to scold and 
nag. Now no man desires a scolding, nagging wife, 
and no child desires such a mother ; but saints are 
rare and I don't believe that history past or present 
proves that saintly women have in the past or do now 
gain men's love of te nest or hold it longest. The two 
women, one white, another colored, that I sorrowed 
with over recreant husbands, were true, loving wives ; 
one had just saved her small earnings toward buying 
the husband a birthday present and had unsuspectingly 
kissed good-bye the partner of his flight. The other 
clasped more lovingly the hand of the baby boy that 
most resembled him and only spoke of the facts as 
occasion required it in business concerning the prop- 
erty he had left behind ; both men had found no fault 
with these wives, treated them kindly up to the last 
hour when they deserted them forever. Neither sugar 
nor pickles would be a good diet, but most of us could 
eat a greater quantity of pepper hash than of sugar 
after all. I believe that a woman who has a mind and 
will of her own will become monotonous to a less 
extent than one so continuously sweet and self-effac- 
ing ; and I believe history proves it. 



124 THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 

It may be humanity or masculinity's total depravity, 
but I believe more men tire of sweet women than even 
of scolds, and yet I do not desire to encourage the 
growth of this obnoxious creature. The desirable 
partner for a successful, peaceful married life is a 
woman of well-balanced temperament, who is known 
among her associates as one not given to what is often 
called fits of temper, and yet withal possessing a mind 
of her own. Perhaps my thought is best expressed in 
this extract from " Whimsicalities of Women " by Mrs. 
Frank Leslie in the Sunday Press : 

" Women's nerves are lightly set; the jar that sets 
them all in a thrill passes unfelt over the heavier or- 
ganization of a man ; the breeze that to him is only a 
pleasant stimulus is to her a devastating storm. For 
here is a truth which I present to the consideration of 
my sister women, and I assure them that it is the 
fruit of much observation and study of mankind. A 
woman's little tempers will in the course of years make 
an -impression upon a man's estimate of her that no 
after time can undo ; while, if she once truly love 
him, years of bickering or even ill-treatment on his 
part are wiped away and forgotten by the caresses of 
his returning love, or by the faltering farewell of his 
dying breath. 

"A woman's resentment of the little offences offered 
her by the man she loves is like the sand upon the 
beach, so lightly ruffled, so easily heaved into chasms 
and mountains, but so sure to be placated by the turn 



THE OPPOSITE POINT OF VIEW. 



125 



of the tide, so easily restored to the full integrity of its 
original condition. But the man's consciousness of 
injuries is like the rock lying so stolidly upon that 
shifting beach. The winds blow the sand across him, 
but it soon blows off again. The waves dash over, and 
seem to leave no mark, but the years go by, and twice 
every day the sand and the waves together grind away 
a little and a little of the substance of the rock, and 
after many years, if the sand says, ' I am tired of this 
useless warfare, let us be as we were at first,' the rock 
must sadly answer, ' Nay, that cannot be, for the years 
have worn away what no years can restore. We can 
only make the best of what is left.' " 

It is not possessing a temper, but continuous out- 
bursts of ill-temper that undermine true happiness. 
The home should be founded on right principles, on mor- 
ality, Christian living, a due regard to heredity and envi- 
ronment that promise good for the future. With these 
taken into consideration, backed by love, or even true 
regard, with each having an abiding sense of duty and 
a desire to carry out its principles, no marriage so 
contracted can ever prove a failure. 




A LOFTY STUDY. 

In these days of universal scribbling, when almost 
every one writes for fame or money, many people who 
are not reaping large pecuniary profits from their work 
do not feel justified in making any outlay to gratify the 
necessities of their labors in literature. 

Every one engaged in literary work, even if but to 
a limited extent, feels greatly the need of a quiet 
nook to write in. Each portion of the home seems 
to have its clearly defined use, that will prevent their 
achieving the desired result. A few weeks ago, in the 
course of my travels, I came across an excellent idea 
carried into practical operation, that had accomplished 
the much-desired result of a quiet spot for literary 
work, without the disarrangement of a single portion 
of the household economy. In calling at the house 
of a member of the Society of Friends, I was ushered 
first into the main library on the first floor. Not find- 
ing in it the article sought, the owner invited me to 
walk upstairs to an upper library. I continued my 
ascent until we reached the attic. This had been 
utilized in such a way that it formed a comfortable 
and acceptable study. I made a mental note of my 
(126) 



A LOFTY STUDY. 127 

surroundings. The room was a large sloping attic 
chamber. It contained two windows, one opening on 
a roof; another faced the door : a skylight had been 
cut directly overhead, in- the middle of the room. 
Around the ceiling on the side that was not sloping 
ran a line of tiny closets with glass doors. Another 
side had open shelves. On the sloping side, drawers 
rose from the floor a convenient distance. The re- 
maining corner had a desk built in the wall ; it was 
large and substantial, containing many drawers. Two 
small portable tables were close at hand near the centre. 

An easy chair, an old-fashioned sofa with a large 
square cushion for a pillow, completed the furniture 
of this unassuming study. Neatness, order, comfort 
reigned supreme. Not a sound from the busy street 
reached us. It was so quiet, so peaceful, the air was 
so fresh and pure, it seemed like living in a new 
atmosphere. 

I just sat down and wondered why I had never 
thought of this very room for a study. Almost every 
family has an unused attic, dark, sloping, given up to 
odds and ends. Now let it be papered with a creamy 
paper, with narrow stripes, giving the impression of 
height ; a crimson velvety border. Paint the wood- 
work a darker shade of yellow, hang a buff and 
crimson portiere at the door. Put in an open grate ; 
next widen the windowsills, and place on them boxes 



128 A LOFTY STUDY. 

of flowering" plants. Get an easy chair, a desk that suits 
your height, and place by its side a revolving book- 
case, with the books most used in it. Let an adjustable 
lamp stand by its side, and with a nice old-fashioned 
sofa, well supplied with cushions, you will have a study 
that a queen might envy you. Bright, airy, cheerful, 
and almost noiseless, not easy of access to those who 
would come only to disturb, and far enough away to 
be cosy and inviting, conferring a certain privilege on 
the invited guest. 

These suggestions can be improved upon, but the 
one central idea, a place to one's self without disturbing 
the household economy, would be gained. 

Even when there is a library in the home, it is used 
by the whole family, and if the husband is literary in 
his tastes, he often desires to occupy it exclusively at 
the very time you have leisure, perhaps. Men are so 
often educated to work alone that even sympathetic 
companionship annoys. Very selfish, we say, but we 
often find it so — and therefore the necessity of a study 
of one's own. 

If even this odd room cannot be utilized for your 
purposes, have at least your own corner in some 
cheerful room. A friend who edits a special depart- 
ment in a weekly has in her own chamber a desk with 
plenty of drawers and small separate compartments. 
The desk just fits in an alcove of the room, with a re- 



A LOFTY STUDY. 



129 



volving-chair in front. What a satisfaction to put every- 
thing in order, turn the key, and feel that all is safe — 
no busy hands, no stray breeze can carry away or dis- 
arrange some choice idea' kept for the future delec- 
tation of the public ! Besides this, one who writes 
much generally finds that she can write best at some 
certain spot. Ideas come more rapidly, sentences 
take more lucid forms. Very often the least change 
from that position will break up the train of thought. 










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CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS DEVOTED TO THE EDU- 
CATION OF THE COLORED RACE. 

By the educational statistics of the last census there 
were 124 institutions for the instruction of the colored 
race, having an enrolment of 15,404 students, requir- 
ing 576 instructors. 

The greater number of institutions devoted exclusive- 
ly to Negro education are situated in the South. The 
larger portion of the work has been and still is carried 
on by denominational enterprise. Possibly the most 
important part of the work has been under the super- 
vision of the American Missionary Association, the 
Presbyterian Board of Missions for Freedmen, and the 
Freedmen's Aid Society of the Methodist Episcopal 
Church. 

It is a well known fact that a few of these institutions 
employ colored men in their Faculties ; and we have 
endeavored to secure information as to the actual per- 
centage of colored persons serving as Professors in 
institutions, but have failed to receive a reply to our 
queries. 

Although a number of these institutions have been 
(130) 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 131 

in existence from 20 to 30 years, this absence is notice- 
able. Unlike other educational institutions, the pref- 
erence (where it is possible) is not given to their own 
alumni. At the time of the founding of these institutions 
the colored race had within its bounds few men of supe- 
rior education ; but with the aid of such institutions, 
and the opening of the doors of all the higher grade 
colleges of the North, East, and West, the reverse 
has now become true and large numbers of colored men 
and women are now thoroughly competent for such 
positions. 

The continued failure of these institutions to ac- 
knowledge this fact, to employ any considerable num- 
ber of colored men in the Faculties, and to seek the 
patronage of colored men of wealth and culture as 
advisers on the Board of Trustees, has led the colored 
alumni, and many friends of education, to feel that 
there is a deep-seated cause for this neglect of colored 
graduates; and that the explanation lies in caste 
prejudice. This charge, when made by the colored 
men, is parried with such excuses as the following : 

1st. The presence of colored men in Faculty posi- 
tions would retard the work ; they would be unable 
to secure funds from the white patrons of such insti- 
tutions. 

2d. That benefactors would not be so liberal if 



132 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

the distribution of the funds were left to the discre- 
tion of the beneficiaries. 

3d. The ambition, though laudable and legitimate, 
is premature. 

4th. The colored people do not contribute largely 
to endowments and should not expect to have any 
voice in the control. 

5th. The colored man has a lack of confidence in 
himself and his race. 

The fallacy of the first and second objections was 
brought forcibly to our mind by a conversation with 
Rev. J. C. Price, D. D., the honored and successful 
President of Livingston University, Salisbury, N. C. 

Said Mr. Price : " In speaking to a gentleman on 
whom I called for aid for our work, I remarked, 'I 
come to you at a disadvantage, being a black man,' 
the usual custom being for white men to make the 
plea for such a cause. He interrupted me by saying, 
* Not so ; I would give you ten dollars where I would 
give a white man one, for I believe the colored man 
to be more sincerely interested in himself and his race 
than a white man can be for him.' " 

The success of Livingston College, Tuskegee Nor- 
mal School, Ala., and Wilberforce University of the 
A. M. E. Church, successfully refute the two first-named 
objections. 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 133 

This is from the Atlanta Defiance : Not long since 
$7000 were given to the Normal School at Tuskegee, 
Alabama. This institution is run by 17 colored officers 
and teachers and the donors are two whites of Boston, 
Mass. A kw years ago no such faith as this would 
have been entertained in, the executive ability of the 
Negro. Gradually, the Negro grows in ability and in 
confidence of the balance of mankind. 

This is worthy of note, and if the confidence here 
mentioned is to be measured by dollars, then North 
Carolina is far ahead. Livingston College at Salis- 
bury, a school managed entirely by colored men, has 
received four or five times $7000 from similar sources. 

SELF-EDUCATION OF THE NEGRO. 

A Successful Alabama School. 

I came to Tuskegee, a characteristic Southern village 
of about 3000 inhabitants, for the sake of seeing the 
most successful effort of the Negro at self-education in 
this country. I speak here of one large school which 
has been under Negro control from its inception, at 
which everything is done neatly, thoroughly, and with 
intelligent despatch. That school is the Tuskegee 
Normal Colored School. Here you have a small 
Hampton, which was founded, and has always been 
manned by the colored race. 



134 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

This Baby Hampton has come into existence mys- 
teriously, and almost as suddenly as did Aladdin's 
Palace. — Chicago Liter- Ocean. 

In answer to the third objection, the colored man 
silently points to like institutions among the whites, 
of like grade, with the same number of graduates and 
the same number of years of growth, with their array of 
recruits from their own ranks, and he obstinately holds, 
in the face of the facts brought out by this survey, 
either the institutions for colored people are education- 
ally a failure, or caste prejudice bars the doors against 
their colored graduates. 

The fourth objection — the poverty that prevents 
endowments — must also fade to less brightness in the 
face of the substantial aid secured for Fisk University 
through the Jubilee Singers, and to Lincoln University 
and Hampton Institute through the eloquent discus- 
sions on the Negro problem, delivered from time to 
time by their graduates. 

The last objection, that the Negro has a lack of confi- 
dence in himself and race, may appear at first sight to 
have some foundation, as the teachings of Slavery 
went far to engender a distrust in the minds of the 
race concerning their own abilities ; but this lack of 
confidence has been met by ministers, lawyers, and 
physicians of the race, and has given way to an earnest 
pride in their success, and the belief that the presence 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 135 

of a fair percentage of colored men in the responsible 
position of Professors in these institutions would have 
beneficial results, and constitute one of the strongest 
reasons the alumni have for desiring this new departure 
in the management of such institutions. 

The recent series of articles " On the Negro," ap- 
pearing in the N,Y, Independent, show conclusively that 
the Negro has confidence in himself and his race, and in 
their ultimate success. A gradually developed but 
wide-spread feeling of dissatisfaction concerning this 
state of affairs has been coming to the surface in the 
alumni meetings of the various institutions for the last 
five years. In the case of Lincoln, Howard, Hampton 
and Biddle, the discussions have become public, the 
feeling has run high, and in each case the local press 
and best thinkers of both races are on the side of the 
alumni. 

In the late discussion at Howard University, Wash- 
ington, D. C, upon the filling of a vacancy occurring 
in the faculty, in answer to the spirit of opposition 
shown, said Senator Hoar: " I think the interests of 
the colored race will be much promoted as its mem- 
bers take the place of honor, requiring capacity, in 
other pursuits outside of politics." 

Rev. Dr. Francis Grimke, in reviewing the circum- 
stances of that hour, exclaims : " It was a spectacle w r hich 
I shall never forget ; I saw Gen. Kirkpatrick, an ex- 



136 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

Confederate General, an ex-slaveholder, a member of 
the Democratic party, pleading for the appointment of 
a black man as Professor of Greek, under the very- 
shadow of the nation's capitol, while old Abolitionists 
were diligently seeking to propagate the damnable 
heresy that it was immodest and presumptuous for 
black men to aspire to such positions, and by their 
voice and vote showing that they were determined to 
discourage as far as possible such aspiration. An ex- 
Confederate General, an ex-slaveholder, a member of 
the Democratic party, and yet the most pronounced 
advocate of Negro advancement, on the Trustee Board 
of a black institution, made up largely of Northern 
men and Republicans ! An ex-slaveholder, and yet, 
with the most advanced ideas, with the clearest con- 
ception of the true policy to be pursued in the man- 
agement of such institutions." The closing words of 
his address on that memorable occasion were these — 
turning to his white brethren, he said : " We must 
decrease in these institutions, but they must increase." 
The last arraignment of this spirit of caste was at 
the alumni meeting of Lincoln University, held June, 
1886. The matter had been broached to the faculty 
and trustees repeatedly. The name of a thoroughly 
competent member of the alumni was presented to the 
faculty for professor, to fill a certain vacancy. The 
fullest endorsement accompanied the recommendation 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 137 

of the alumni, but the whole matter was treated with 
bitter contempt, not even receiving a reply. A mem- 
ber of the Board of Trustees, when approached on the 
subject, admitted that possibly in the far future colored 
men would occupy such positions at Lincoln, but for 
the present it was not the policy of the institution. 
" The facultv of Lincoln," said he, "are as one familv, 
and the admission of a colored professor and his family 
would be objectionable." On one occasion a young man, 
a graduate of this institution, being requested to speak, 
at the commencement exercises, broached the subject, 
offering to give $700 towards the endowment of a cer- 
tain chair if occupied by a colored man. The speech was 
resented by the faculty, and the speaker was given to 
understand that the trustees and not the alumni made 
the appointments, and that hereafter he would not be 
invited to speak. 

This state of affairs was freely commented upon by 
the alumni, and has created an actual enmity between 
the opposing forces. The alumni have endeavored to 
find the actual sentiment of the local clergy, and the 
wealthy patrons and friends of education on the matter; 
the following interviews give a partial idea of the real 
state of feeling regarding the matter: — 

Boston, June 21, 1886. 
Sir: — Referring to your note of the 17th inst, upon 
the question of caste in colored institutions, I can 



138 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

answer in three words. I see no reason why a colored 

man, whose talents, requirements, and conduct entitle 

him to a position socially and intellectually in scientific 

institutions, should not be received and in the same 

way as if he were not colored. 

Yours truly, ^ „, -^ T , 

/J Benj. F. Butler. 

If the equity of the well-worn balancer, cceteris 
paribus (all the other qualifications on a par), be ad- 
mitted, expressed or understood, then colored men 
and women should have a preference in every colored 
institution. We go further, in non-essentials a slightly 
imperfect par should not amount to a perfect bar. 

— Editor St. Joseph's Advocate, Baltimore, Md. 

The following is the opinion of Geo. D. McCreary, 
a resident of Philadelphia, who has given largely to 
educational institutions : — 

" My opinion is that the question of color should 
not enter into the management of the Lincoln or other 
educational institutions for colored students, and if 
fully qualified for the positions, no objection should be 
made to their becoming members of the faculties or 
trustees after graduation. The opposition to such a 
policy is indicative, either that the work of the insti- 
tution is not thorough and the graduates only super- 
ficially educated, or is based on the low plane of objec- 
tion on account of color, with perhaps the desire on 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 139 

the part of the incumbents to keep the places for them- 
selves by preventing competition." 

The following is an editorial comment from the 
Philadelphia Press, of June, 1886: — 

CASTE IN THE COLORED COLLEGES. 

It is difficult to see how the trustees of at least two 
of the colored colleges can escape "both horns" of the 
dilemma presented to them by Dr. N. F. Mossell at a 
meeting Wednesday evening of the alumni of Lincoln 
University. The university has been some thirty years 
in existence, and counts some 400 graduates; but none 
of these is represented in the faculty, and, as Dr. Mos- 
sell says, this circumstance indicates one of two things, 
" either that the education of the university is a failure, 
or that the caste prejudice forces the alumni out of 
these positions." Their exclusion is, at all events, 
anomalous. In other educational institutions it is 
the common practice to appoint graduates to faculty 
positions, whenever this may be done without detri- 
ment to the interests concerned, and there is no reason 
why the question should not obtain in a college for 
colored men as well as in one for white men. 

Such, however, is the fact, and the alumni of colored 
colleges naturally feel very sore about it. As alumni, 
and particularly alumni belonging to a race which, but 
a generation ago, it was in some portions of this coun- 
try a crime to instruct in the simplest rudiments of 



140 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

education, they are supposed to take an especial pride 
and an honorable interest in their colleges. They 
share, indeed, the interest which of late years has been 
especially evinced by alumni of all the colleges of the 
country. 

The graduates of Howard, Biddle,* and Lincoln Uni- 
versities have made urgent and repeated requests for 
representation in the faculties of those institutions. In 
the first named they have been measurably successful, 
we believe, but in neither of the others has their 
request met with the consideration they bespeak for 
it and they are convinced that the reason is that as- 
signed by Dr. Mossell. 

And if this is possible it ought to be done. For 
nothing can be less in accord with the principles on 
which the colored colleges were founded, than the fos- 
tering in the faintest degree, or the most impalpable 
form, of the spirit of caste, which these alumni charge 
upon their trustees, and which bears upon them far 
more cruelly than does ignorance, since it militates 
against their consideration as men. 

" It gives me pleasure," said Rev. J. Wheaton Smith, 
the noted Baptist divine, " to say that complexion, 
whether light or dark, is not the test of manhood, and 

* Biddle has at this date an entire colored faculty, who are doing 
good work, 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 141 

should constitute no hindrance to either a pupil or 
teacher. In an institution of learning for the educa- 
tion of the colored race, other things being equal, I 
should give the preference to the darker hue. It is 
demanded by a ripening future, and the past crowded 
with un-numbered wrongs. 

THE QUESTION OF COLOR SHOULD BE BARRED. 

Said Rev. D. Baker, D. D., Pastor of the First 
Presbyterian Church, Washington Square, Philadelphia: 

" I am of the decided opinion that the question of 
color should not enter in the least into the choice of 
professors or trustees in educational institutions ; if a 
colored man is qualified, it is not unlikely that he 
might be on this account especially useful as an edu- 
cator of his own race." 

Rev. W. P. Breed, D. D., Pastor of West Spruce 
Street Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia, said : — 

" On general principles the alumni of colored insti- 
tutions should most undoubtedly be treated precisely 
as the alumni of all other institutions. The colored 
people are doing nobly, and they have my earnest 
wishes for their success and advancement." 

Said Samuel Allen, of Philadelphia : — 

"The Institute for Colored Youth, founded forty 
years ago, has been constantly under the care of the 
Society of Friends, by whom it was established. Hav- 



142 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

ing been connected with the Institute for Colored Youth 
as a manager of it, and somewhat familiar with it for 
quite a number of years, I am persuaded that the plan 
pursued there is an efficient one — of employing colored 
teachers in it, who have in almost every case proved 
themselves equal to the requirements. The instruc- 
tion includes the higher branches of the knowledge of 
history, of mathematics and of the sciences ; all of 
which they > teach to the entire satisfaction of the man- 
agers, and, as far as I know, to all concerned." 

The sentiment of the advanced and liberal thinkers of 
the colored race given on the subject is as follows : — 

Robert Purvis, of Philadelphia, says : " We demand 
that the same rule be applied to us as is applied to 
others. We ask no favors. We believe in the doc- 
trine of equal rights. We ask no more, we will sub- 
mit to no less; and in this especial instance I believe 
that, where the same qualifications as to character and 
fitness exists, the preference should be given to colored 
men as long as Colored Institutions exist. A fair show 
should be given in all other institutions. I am in 
favor of our being one people and American citizens." 

WHAT FRED DOUGLASS THINKS OF THE SUBJECT. 

" I have long noticed the tendency in colored insti- 
tutions, as well as others, to repress and discourage 
the colored man's ambition to be something more than 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 143 

a subordinate, when he is qualified to occupy superior 
positions. It is a part of the old spirit of caste, a 
legacy left us by slavery, against which we have to 
contend. It is all the more difficult to meet because 
in colored institutions under white control, it usually 
assumes the guise of religion and a pious regard for 
the happiness of the object of its disparagement, These 
people play * Miss 'Phelia to Topsy.' They would 
have us among the angels in Heaven, but do not want 
to touch elbows with us on earth." 

WHAT DR. N. F. MOSSELL, OF PHILADELPHIA, SAYS. 

" The best policy is not being pursued, when colored 
men, qualified both by nature and acquirements, are 
designedly excluded from the Faculties and Trustee 
Boards of our colleges of learning. I think no reason- 
able man will deny that." 

OTHER OPINIONS. 

Rev. Dr. B. F. Lee, editor of the Christian Recorder, 
the organ of the A. M. E. Church, who was for a 
number of years President of the Wilberforce Uni- 
versity, said : " I think that there is a spirit of un- 
rest among colored people in that they are losing 
confidence in the management of these institutions. 
They feel that they have been overlooked ; that white 
men are many times put over them as teachers when 



144 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

persons of their own race could fill the position 
equally as well or better. The teachings of religion 
will never allow any one race to be its own absolute 
and exclusive educator, much less the educator of all 
races." 

Prof. E. A. Bouchett, a. graduate of Yale College, 
who is professor in the Institute for Colored Youth in 
Philadelphia, said : " The day has long gone by when 
an educated colored man was looked upon in this 
country as a curiosity. All persons of intelligence 
agree that the Negro is capable of undergoing the 
most severe mental training with credit to himself and 
his alma mater. The success of the graduates of colored 
colleges as teachers is abundantly attested, especially 
in the South and West ; so the exclusion from the 
professor's chair in his own alma mater cannot be 
defended by alleging lack of ability or deficient 
capacity." 

PROF. S. M. COZES, OF TEXAS, 

who ten years ago took a second degree at Yale 
College, says : " Many of my college and class-mates 
are now occupying the best pulpits in the land ; many 
are tutors, professors, and principals of our best insti- 
tutions for the education of youth. Now, it is claimed 
by our colored institutions that twenty years is not 
sufficient for them to develop fifty or seventy- five first- 
class scholarly men, from among seven million people, 



CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 145 

to occupy in equal ratios the honorable position for 
elevating their own race; if this be true, it must follow 
that there is a defect somewhere in the educational 
system ; perhaps the present corps of instructors in 
these institutions are incompetent to fill the positions 
they occupy, or, perhaps, many are acting the role of 
Government officials, having a pleasant time at the 
people's expense. 

" This is the conclusion we are driven to from their 
own statement. 

" Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Amherst, and other white 
colleges, can in ten years accomplish more than those 
colored institutions in twenty. Something is radically 
wron£ ! But is it true that colored men have not been 
developed since the war sufficiently able to direct the 
work of educating their own race ? In the present 
condition of things this is unthinkable. 

" Grover Cleveland, the President of the United States, 
wishes a suitable representative of the Government at 
the Court of Port Au Prince, and finds the abilities of 
a young colored man less than twenty-six years old, 
and less than three years from one of our American 
colleges, sufficiently matured to fill the position; and 
again, desiring to fill another important position, the 
Liberian Minister, he calls upon an ex-slave, a gradu- 
ate from Lincoln University, in the class of 1873. 

" My college-mate, our President, is a Democrat, yet 
10 



146 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

he does not ignore the Negro's ability. In all depart- 
ments of the Government colored men are placed in 
responsible positions, and they serve well — very few 
Belknaps and Moseses. And equally true it is that 
colored institutions, conducted entirely by colored 
people, are just as efficient in their work as those con- 
ducted by the white for the colored students." 

We demand educated colored teachers for all colored 
schools, because their color identity makes them more 
interested in the advancement of colored children than 
white teachers, and because colored pupils need the 
social contact of colored teachers. Our people need 
social as well as educational advancement; and in this 
respect colored teachers can exercise potent influences, 
which would be lost if the selfish policy of employing 
white teachers obtain. — Florida News. 

Large numbers of white people do not teach the 
Negro so much for the interest they have in him as 
they do for that they get. In the second place there 
is always a tendency in a white teacher, however 
much he may be interested in the work, to crush out 
the manly and independent spirit that is essential to 
the full development of the mental powers. 

They always keep prominent the fact that they think 
the Negro is their inferior, and try always to make 
him believe it. In his attainments they virtually say 
to him, thus far shalt thou come and no farther. If 



Caste in institutions. i4? 

he is ambitious and will go beyond the mark they 
made for him, they have no more use for him. — Mis- 
sionary Worker. 

Nothing can be more detrimental to the future ex- 
istence of these institutions than the belief and feeling 
among the alumni and patrons that such a state of 
affairs exists. The above opinions prove conclusively 
that the advanced feeling of the entire country is 
opposed to the fostering of such feeling under the 
guise of aid to the freedman. In an article by Charles 
T. Thiving, entitled "Colleges and their Graduates," 
in a late issue of the Independent, some forcible truths 
are stated which apply equally well to the matter 
under discussion. Says he : — 

" The graduates of a college are at once its warmest 
friends and severest critics. The best friends of a col- 
lege should naturally be found among its own gradu- 
ates. Not only should a college foster the spirit of 
loyalty among its own graduates but these graduates 
may be and should be the most useful of its friends. 

" In a large relation it may be added that alumni 
associations are of vast service. They tend to unify 
the best thought of some of the best men as to most 
important interests." 

None of which can be the case if a feeling of repulsion 
and distrust has been aroused in the heart of the mem- 
bers of the alumni by a knowledge that the faculties 



148 CASTE IN INSTITUTIONS. 

and trustees are fostering caste prejudice against them. 
It is felt by the graduates that the caste prejudice is 
not shared by the patrons of these institutions who 
give freely and lovingly of their means, trusting to 
their trustees and faculties to attend to the distribu- 
tion of it to the best advantage of those for whom it is 
contributed, but that caste is developed in the facul- 
ties, who are as a rule poor men and desire to secure 
and hold lucrative life positions for themselves and 
families. The purpose to ignore the Negro socially is 
another factor in the problem. They see that if a 
colored man becomes a member of the faculty he must 
be treated as other members of that department are 
treated; to this they will not submit; hence the colored 
man may not occupy the position. An odd feature of 
this caste prejudice is the strong hold it has upon the 
churches. The K. of L. and G. A. R. are open to him. 
The State institutions all over the country are fast be- 
coming free to all, and where the schools are separate 
as Virginia State Normal, Mississippi State Normal, 
and Alabama State Normal Schools, the positions are 
given to competent colored teachers; but the church, 
the denominational schools under its control, the 
Christian Associations, cling to caste prejudice and 
sow the seed of distrust and unbelief in the heart of 
the black man. 



VERSE. 



TWO QUESTIONS. 

You ask me these two questions, dear: 

What is the purest gift 

That erst survived the fall ? 

And how that I should choose to die, 

If I must die at all ? 

I'll answer thee : I know no purer gift than Love; 

No greater bliss than just to dwell 

Close held in Love's own clasp ; 

And glancing oft into the lovelight of thine eye; 

Thus drifting from this earthly shore 

See thee only, until I reached that land 

Where love is love forever more. 

LOVE'S PROMPTINGS. 
Let thy life be precious unto thee, remembering this 
There is no joy that life doth hold for me, 
But greater is that I may tell it thee ; 
No burden borne that bids me weep, 
But would be greater far if thou didst lie 
Quiet and still in thy last sleep. 

I should be satisfied if I could lead thee to a 

stronger walk, 
That thy work should lie in some channel deep 

and wide, 

(149) 



15Q VERSE. 

If heart and soul were attuned to some good 

purpose, 
Though unto me through life, companionship 

should be denied, 
Yet thus knowing, I should be satisfied. 

love's failure. 
That love hath failed its task 
That hath not moved to greater, purer deeds, 
And I shall feel for evermore 
That love hath failed to do all that I willed for 

thee, 
Unless it moves to purer, loftier heights, 
To nobler aims, that life may truly be 
God's greatest, noblest gift, a heritage to thee. 

RECOMPENSE. 

Until life's end thy love shall be 
The dearest boon earth holds for me, 
And when death comes and leads us hence, 
Then love shall find its recompense. 

GOOD NIGHT. 

Good night! Ah no, that cannot be 

Good night that severs thee from me ; 

To dwell with thee in converse sweet, 

And evermore thy presence greet, 

Filling thy life with cheer and light, 

Then each hour lost would bring good night. 

To listen for thy footsteps' fall, 

To answer when thy voice doth call, 



VERSE. 151 

To feel thy kisses warm and sweet, 

Thy downward glance my lifted eye to greet, 

To feel love's silence, and its might, 

Then evermore 't would be good night. 

To dwell with thee shut in, and all the world shut out, 

Close clasped in love's own clasp, 

And thus to feel that I to thee belong 

And thou to me ; 

That nevermore on earth shall parting come, 

But only at the bidding of that Loving One, 

With will, power and hope- to show love's might, 

Then, and not till then, can come good night. 

To know thy every helpful thought, 

To look upon the universe and think God's thoughts 

after him, 
To see the mystic beauty of music, poetry and art, 
To minister unto thy every want, 
To fill thy life with all the joy that woman's love can 

bring, 
To shield thy life from evil, to bring thee good with 

love's insight, 
Tin's daily life would surely bring to each 
The best good night. 

LIFE. 

A cry, 

A sigh, 

A sunny day, 

An hour of play, 

A budding youth, 

A time of truth. 



152 VERSE. 



An "All is well," 

A marriage bell, 

A childish voice, 

That bids rejoice, 

A fleeting hcur 

Of transient power, 

A wounded heart, 

Death's poisoned dart, 

A fleeting tear, 

A pall, a bier, 

And following this, 

Oh ! loss or gain, 

An afterlife o^ joy or pain. 



MY BABES THAT NEVER GROW OLD. 

How oft in the gathering twilight 
I dream of the streets of gold, 

Of my little angel children, 

" My babes that never grow old." 



I can see my tiny woman 

With doll, and book held tight — 
Keeping time with my every footstep,- 

From early morn until night. 

And then, a white-robed figure 

Is kneeling at eventide, 
And a voice lisps, "God bless papa, 

And dear little brother beside." 



VERSE. 153 

I sec my laughing treasure, 

My darling baby boy, 
With his little soft hands waving, 

And his cheeks aglow with joy. 

The clap, clap, clap, for papa to come, 
To bring the baby a fife and drum, 

Then each little pig that to market went, 
And the one wee pig at home. 

In the bureau drawer hid out of sight 

Is the rattle, and cup, and ball ; 
The beautiful scrap-book laid away 

With dresses, and shoes and all ; 

And then, as the tears begin to flow, 

And grief to find a voice, 
A soft cooing sound I hear at my side, 

That bids me ever rejoice. 

I clasp her quick in a loving embrace 

My one lamb out of the fold, 
Yet [ ponder oft as I softly kiss, 

Will baby ever grow old ? 



Then cometh this thought to ease the pain, 
Mow God in his Hook hath given, 

"Suffer little children to come unto Me, 
For ot such is the kingdom of heaven." 



154 VERSE. 



EARTH'S SORROWS. 



There are netlles everywhere ; 
But smooth green grasses are more common still : 
The blue of heaven is larger than the cloud. 

— Mrs. Browning. 

In the bright and pleasant spring-time 

We laid a dear form to rest : 
The silvered head and the face of care, 

The hands close crossed on the breast. 

We gave God thanks for the suffering done, 

The peace, and the joy and bliss, 
That life had been l'ived, its trial were o'er, 

The next world's rest for the toil of this. 

Then with the coming of winter's chill blast, 

Low down in its earthy bed 
The child of our love we softly laid 

In its place with the lowly dead. 

Friends crowded around with their whispers of love, 

But we thought of the vacant cot, 
The sweet voice now for evermore stilled, 

And with sorrow we mourned our lot. 

Then, with the silent fall of the leaves, 

The last bird left our nest, 
Our arms were empty, the house was stilled, 

For our boy had gone to his rest. 

We tried to repeat all words of prayer, 
All submissive and quiet thoughts ; 



VERSE. 155 

We tried to say God doth give and doth take, 
Blessed be the name of the Lord. 

Earth's joys are many, its sorrows are few, 

And when in our arms was laid 
A new little lamb to be trained for his fold, 

We said that our God was good. 

With thankful hearts we took up once more 

The warp and the woof of life, 
And out from our mind, our heart and thought, 

We thrust the struggle and strife. 

And trusting God in His mercy still, 

The Man of sorrow and acquaint with grief, 

We say this life to an end must come, 
Both its joys and sorrows be brief. 



QUERY AND ANSWER. 

You say that your life is shadowed 

W T ith grief and sorrow and pain, 
That you never can borrow a happy to-morrow 

And the future holds little of gain. 

That a woman's life is but folly 

Scarce aught she may cheerfully do ; 

You think of your fate not with love but with hate, 
And wish that your days may be few\ 

You long with a bitter longing 
To enter the battle of life, 



156 VERSE. 

To strike sonic sure blow as onward you go 
To soften its warfare and strife. 

You hate to be idly waiting 

As the years are drifting by, 
A chance to be doing while duty pursuing 

And the years so swiftly fly* 

Nay, a woman's life is the noblest 

That ever Old Time looked on, 
Her lot both the rarest and fairest 

That ever the sun shone on. 

Both dearer and sweeter and fairer 

Than any in all of this earth, 
So full of its din of sorrow and sin 

Scarce feel we its cheer or its mirth. 

Think oft of the hearts you may gladden, 
The tears you may soon chase away, 

The many kind deeds that the wanderer needs 
To keep him from going astray. 

Think oft of the mite of the widow, 

The cup of cold water given, 
The love and faith mild of the little child 

That gaineth a seat in heaven. 

Have you thought of the sweet box of ointment 
That Mary the Magdalene shed, 
. In its fragrance and beauty for love and not duty, 
Then wiped with the hair of her head ? 



VERSE. 157 

Have you thought of the smile and the hand-clasp 

That met you some weary day, 
That warmed you and fed you and hopefully led you 

To a safe and surer way ? 

Dear friend, when you faint by the wayside 

Oh think of these little things, 
Then comfort the weary, the sad and the dreary 

And time will pass swift on its wings. 

Let hope comfort, encourage and cheer you 

And help you to bravely say, 
Not idly repining, but working and striving, 

Not hiding my talent away. 

Then think not your lot has been hampered 

Or shadowed by grief or pain, 
But up and adoing, still duty pursuing, 

The crown you surely must gain. 



WORDS. 

"Words fitly spoken are like apples of gold in pictures of Silver." 
"A word is a picture of a thought." 

Words — idle words — ye may not speak, 

Without a care or thought ; 
For all that pass your lips each day 

With good or ill are fraught. 



158 VERSE. 

The words of joy, and peace, and love, 

You spoke at early morn, 
Though time has passed and day is o'er, 

Are on their mission borne. 

The threat of pain, and fear, and hate, 

You shouted in your wrath, 
With all its deadly doing, still 

Is lying in your path. 

Nay, e'en the tiny waves of air 

Your secret will not keep, 
And all you speak when wide awake 
Is whispered, though you sleep. 

A word may be a curse, a stab, 

And, when the sun is west, 
Its onward course it still may run 

And rankle in some breast. 

But words, small words, and yet how great, 
Scarce do we heed their power ; 

Yet they may fill the heart with joy, 
And soften sorrow's hour. 

True hearts, by words, are ofttimes knit; 

Bound with a mystic tie, 
Each golden link a word may loose; 

Yea, cause true love itself to die. 



VERSE. 159 

Mother, friendship, home and love ; 

Only words, but Oh, how sweet ! 
How they cause the pulse to quicken, 

Eye or ear, whene'er they greet. 

"Peace on earth, good will to men," 

Are the words the angels spake, 
And long ages echo them ; 

Still their tones glad music make. 

Each day we live, each day we speak ; 

And ever an angel's pen 
Doth write upon those pages fair 

The words of sinful men. 

But one small word, but it must be 

A power for good or ill, 
And when the speaker lieth cold 

May work the Master's will. 

Then learn their power and use them well, 

That memory ne'er may bring 
In time of mirth or lonely hour 

A sad or bitter sting. 

Let only words of truth and love 

The golden silence break, 
That God may read on record bright, 

She spoke for "Jesus' sake." 



160 VERSE. 

TELL THE NORTH THAT WE ARE RISING. 

At the laying of the corner-stone of Atlanta Uni- 
versity in 1879 occurred the incident recorded in the 
following lines. 

There was the human chattel 

Its manhood taking ; 

There in each dark brain statue, 

A soul was waking. 

The man of many battles, 

The tears his eyelids pressing, 

Stretched over those dusky foreheads 

His one-armed blessing. 

And he said : " Who hears can never 

Fear for nor doubt you ; 

What shall I tell the children 

Up North about you ? " 

Then ran round a whisper, a murmur, 

Some answer devising; 

And a little boy * stood up — " Massa, 

Tell 'em we're rising." f 

Tell the North that we are rising; 
Tell this truth throughout the land — 
Tell the North that we are rising — 
Rising at our God's command. 

* R. R. Wright, the little hero of this poem, has now grown to 
manhood and occupies the responsible position of President of the 
Georgia State Industrial College for Colored Youth. 

f Whittier. 



VERSE. 161 

Could the bravest say it better ? 

Was the child a prophet sent? 

From the mouths of babes and sucklings 

Are the words of wisdom lent. 

Tell the North that we are rising ; 
East and West the tidings go ; 
Tell this truth throughout the nation — 
Tell it to both friend and foe. 

Tell our true and tried friend Lincoln, 
Tell our Grant and Sumner true — 
Tell them each that we are rising, 
Knowing we have work to do. 

See the child before us standing, 
All his heart and life aglow, 
Backward flit the years of sorrow; 
Onward hopes, bright visions flow. 

All his life has lost its shadow, 
Filled is it with coming light; 
Hope and Faith again triumphant 
Make the present glad and bright. 

Thus the keynote of our future 
Touched he with his childish hand; 
In his words the inspiration 
Lino-erincf vet throughout the land. 

And the brave old poet \\ nittier 
Treasured up his song in verse, 
11 



162 \ ERSE. 

That the myriads yet to follow, 
Might anon the tale rehearse. 

Those who then wore childhood's garland 
Now are true and stalwart men ; 
Those who bore war's dreadful burdens, 
Friend and foe have died since then. 

But we still would send the message 
To our friends where'er they roam, 
We are rising, yea, have risen: 
Future blessings yet will come. 

Noble son of noble mother, 
When our hearts would shrink and falter, 
We yet treasure up your message, 
Laying it on freedom's altar. 

We with courage strive to conquer, 
'Till as England's Hebrews stand 
We are neither slaves nor tyrants, 
But are freemen on free land. 



THE MARTYRS OF TO-DAY. 

By the swiftly flowing rivers, 
In the fertile Southern land, 

Gathered there from lane and highway, 
Scores of men, an earnest band. 

Not with brows of snowy whiteness, 
Not with chiseled features rare; 



VERSE. 163 



Rather cheeks of sable darkness, 
Yet was God's own ima^e there. 



i ^ 



Do they fear the chain of bondage ? 

Do they fear the lash or mart ? 
Slaves ignoble ! do they tremble — 

Sadly lack the freeman's heart ? 

See, one in their midst — a brother — 
Reads of blood and deeds of pain — 

Deeds of cruelty and outrage — 
That with horror chill each vein. 

He, with solemn tone and gesture, 
Furrowed brow and wearied hand, 

Reads this tale so weird and solemn, 
To this earnest, thinking band. 

In the silence of the midnight, 
Decked in robes of dingy white, 

On their foamed and maddened chargers, 
And with features hid from sight, 

Ride a band of fearless South'rons, 

With a ruthless iron will ; 
Ride their foamed and maddened chargers, 

Through the vale and o'er the hill. 



'is 



And they give to none the quarter 
Which the brave are wont to give ; 

Man nor woman, babe nor suckling, 
Be thev black, are 'lowed to live. 



164 VERSE. 

These now all were made to perish 

By the flower of Southern life ; 
And the deed is yet commended 

By both Southern maid and wife. 

Long, too long, our race has suffered, 
Both from church and school and state; 

Trade and ballot long denied us, 
Yet our friends still council, wait. 

Must we, then, give up the struggle ? 

Must we sail for Afric's shore ? 
Must we leave this land we've toiled in ? 

Must it swim again with gore ? 

Must we wait with greater patience? 

Must we say, "Oh, Lord, forgive ? 
Must we love these worse than foemen, 

Who forbid us die or live ? 

We must ponder Calvary's lesson; 

View our martyred Saviour's fate; 
Work and pray, with faith in heaven ; 

Right must conquer — therefore wait. 

A GREETING SONG TO OUR BROTHERS IN 

AFRICA. 

We send you a greeting, our brothers, 

Our brothers over the sea, 
Who have sailed away to that sunny land, 

Its light and blessing to be. 



VERSE. 165 

We have heard of your safe arrival, 
Of the work you have chosen to do, 

Of the little ones gathered together 
To hear the truths. old and yet new. 

We ask for God's blessing upon you, 

As we lift up our voices in prayer, 
And by faith we know you receive it, 

Though we worship not with you there. 

The harvest is great, let reapers be many ; 

May ye sow and bountifully reap; 
May your lives be long and useful, 

And mourned your eternal sleep. 



CHILD OF THE SOUTHLAND. 

Child of the Southland 
Baring thy bosom, 
Feeling hate's poisoned dart, 
Reeking with venom, 
God looks upon you, 
Seeth your sorrow ; 
Great the awakening, 
Dawneth the morrow, 
Lifteth the burden, 
Greed placed upon you. 
Mercy is watching 
Justice but sleeping, 
Angels above you, 
Their vigils keeping; 



166 VERSE. 

Cometh the future, 
With its hope laden, 
Keepeth the promise, 
Made us in Eden ; 
Ethiop stretcheth 
Forward her hand, 
Graspeth the staff of life, 
Gaineth the promised land. 



WHY BABY WAS NAMED CHRIS. 

I told mamma I was tired of noise, 
Tired of marbles, and tops and toys, 
I had nobody to play with me. 
So I didn't enjoy myself, you see. 

I told her I guessed that I would pray 
To dear old Chris that very day, 
And tell him then, somehow or other, 
I wanted him to send me a baby brother. 

I knelt right down by my little chair, 

As quick as I could, and said my prayer, 

I went to bed right soon that night 

And jumped up quick with the Christmas light. 

In my little bare feet I softly crept 
Down to the room where my ma slept, 
And there, by the mantel, fast asleep 
Down in a cradle wide and deep, 
Lay a dear little baby brother. 



167 

He had a round face. and a little red nose, 
'I en little fingers, ; ten little toes, 

Two black eyes, and a dimp] d e 
That's where the an ; s -, d h : m . 

So we named him " ( I ri " only that, 

And he grow . .o big and ro y and fat, 

I le rod . and t n ble ab< I .. .:. e [day, 

But never gets h - I alwai 

1 d be right good i Chri i goes by, 

He'll surely see that I always try 

do 'predate my Christmas present. 

ONLY. 

Only a baby, but strong and bright, 
Making us happy from morn until night, 
And knitting together " ith cords of love, 
Those who were joined by the God above. 

Only a boy, with his frolic and Pju, 

I lis marble . and toj d minial ure gun, 

But time rods by, and leaves in his stead 

The man, tender of heart, and wise of head. 

Only a girl, with her dolls and play, 

Her loving glance, and daintv wav — 

But the summers have fled with a sweet surprise, 

And a stately maiden gladdens our eyes. 

The maiden, now, is the matron dear, 

That with tender counsel doth little ones rear; 

And we vow in our hearts, our lips shall ne'er curl 

As we scornfully say, " Only a girl ! " 



168 VERSE. 

Only a flower in a mossy bed ; 
By sun, and by rain, it was gently fed, 
And now in the room of a suffering one, 
Its mission fulfilled, its work is done. 

Only a word, but it chanced to fall 

On the ear of one forsaken of all, 

And a heart, bowed down in its bitterness, 

Arose once more its God to bless. 

Only a song, a gladsome lay, 
Sung cheerily on through a weary day; 
'Twas a simple tune in a merry strain, 
But it eased a heart of its burden of pain. 

Only a thought, full of wondrous power, 
Born in the need of a stricken hour, 
Yet it grew and thrived, and taking root 
In the hearts of many, it bore much fruit. 

Only a prayer, from a heart, sad and lone, 
It passed on its way to the Great White Throne 
'Twas spoken in faith, 'twas answered in love, 
And a sinner turned to his God above. 



BEAUTIFUL THINGS. 

Beautiful eyes are those that see 
God's own children that should be; 
Beautiful ears are those that hear 
Their little footsteps lingering near, 



VERSE. 169 

Beautiful lips are those that press 
Stained ones with fond caress ; 
Beautiful hands are those that grasp 
The blind and erring with gentle clasp. 

Beautiful feet are those that lead 
Wandering ones the path to heed ; 
Beautiful hearts are those that beat 
In sympathy warm at the mercy-seat. 

Beautiful faces are those we see 
And bless our God for memory ; 
Beautiful forms are those that move 
Joyfully forward, on missions of love. 

Beautiful homes are those that teach 
Patient acts and kindly speech ; 
Beautiful lives are those that give 
Others the strength and courage to live. 

Beautiful words are those we spake, 
Timid and tearful, " For Jesus' sake; " 
Beautiful thoughts are those that fly 
On wings of love to God on high. 

Beautiful prayers are those we raise 
For them that turn from wisdom's ways; 
Beautiful songs are those we sing 
When sinners own our Lord and King. 



ij- 



Beautiful wills on God's work bent, 
Beautiful errands of good intent ; 



170 VERSE. 

Beautiful heaven smiling above, 
Beautiful truth that " God is love." 

Beautiful promise in God's own Book — 
Free to all who will only look ; 
Beautiful crown when cross we bear; 
Beautiful ransomed ones, bright and fair. 

Beautiful Saviour, the Crucified Lamb, 
All wise, all loving, the Great I Am; 
Beautiful Sabbath of perfect rest — 
Beautiful day that God has blest. 

Beautiful sleep, all joy and gain, 
No grief or loss, neither sorrow or pain ; 
Beautiful rest with work well done; 
Beautiful saints around God's throne. 

THREE HOURS. 

"Work while it is day; the night Cometh when no man can work." 
" Do noble things, not dream them all day long, and so make life, 
death and that vast forever one grand, sweet song." 

MORNING. 

A mother sat in the rosy dawn 

Of a morning bright and fair, 
Her arms are round her firstborn son, 

Her breath is in his hair. 

My little son to my God I will give 

Ere yet his tongue can lisp ; 
And all the days my boy shall live 

Shall be spent in His service rich. 



VERSE. 171 

But the years pass on and he grows apace, 

His limbs are round and free, 
His feet can tread the meadow path, 

His eyes its wonders see. 

But the mother is busied with household care, 

And ever, like Martha of old, 
Her heart is troubled with many things, 

And the Saviour's love untold. 

The little child is bountifully fed, 

His form is daintily robed, 
And mind and heart are stored with good — 

Only the soul is starved. 

NOON. 

'Tis noon of day and noon of life, 

And the infant is now a youth, 
And the mother's heart to its depth is stirred, 

As it feels the bitter truth. 

That years have passed with their length of days, 

And the babe no longer a child, 
Though loved by all, by many praised, 

Is not loving the Master's precepts mild. 

So carefully striving day by day 

Lost footsteps to retrace, 
The mother's heart goes blindly on, 

Prays for the seed a resting-place. 



172 VERSE. 

But the youth is filled with the hour's conceit ; 

The ground is stony and choked with weeds, 
And seeds of evil already sown 

Must be rooted out ere we sow good seeds. 

And now again the household care 

Is ruling heart and mind, 
And neighbors oft her bounty share, 

And love the eye doth blind. 

NIGHT. 

And now again 'tis set of sun, 

And close of life's fair day; 
The youth has passed to manhood's hour, 

But only lips can pray. 

No longer may the mother voice, 

In accents sweet and mild, 
With holy words of Bible lore, 

Still guide her little child. 

In college walls by scoffers thronged, 

No precious word made household truth, 

Is brought to him, by memory fair, 
To guide his erring youth. 

His life no longer the mother may shape, 
Forever lost is the precious hour; 

Now only God can the wrong undo, 
By the help of His mighty power. 

O, mothers dear ! throughout our land, 
Its acres fair and wide ! 



VERSE. 173 

With little ones your daily care, 
Now walking by your side, 

Keep ever this truth before you ; 

At morn, at night, ahvay, 
That to teach the love of the Saviour, 

His precepts to obey, 

With kindly lips and true, 

Is a work that lies ever before you, 

The best that you can do. 

Let not the hours pass idly on, 

'Till morn and noon and night have come, 
And all your work lay idly by, 

And remain perhaps forever undone • 

But gird your heart up to the work ; 

Let every day some Bible truth 
Be sown in the heart and mind of each child, 

To guide him on in his tender youth. 

And when the close of life shall come 

And all vour work shall cease, 
The Soul to its Giver shall return 

To a life of endless peace. 

THE STORY OF A LIFE. 

CHILDHOOD HOME. 

A precious gift our God has given 

To bless declining years, 
Anew we feel our sins forgiven, 

And eyes o'erflow in grateful tears. 



174 VERSE. 

A little child with gentle ways, 
The darling household pet, 

Swiftly passing, peaceful days, 
The jewel is ours yet. 

The child has passed to bloom of youth 

A maiden fair of face, 
With heart of love and lips of truth, 

Doth still our fireside grace. 

The skilful hands and winsome ways 
Win love without a thought ; 

And words of cheer and songs of praise 
Are given, though all unsought. 

A time of sadness follows now, 
And then a Saviour's love ; 

A grateful band we humbly bow, 
And thank our Friend above. 

But grown to years of maidenhood 

The heart is not our own ; 
Though home is dear and God is love, 

The sweet content has flown. 



MAIDENHOOD LOVE. 

A quiet room, an easy chair, 
With firelight all aglow, 

Two loving hearts, beat happily — 
Ah, quickly time doth flow. 



VERSE. 175 

A breathless parting for a year, 
A tear fro - w : : dark eye, 
A joyful n : at its :. 

Ah, quickly time doth fly. 

A fancied bond of friendship, 

A I c fi . :e, 

A wicked heart tc . :eit, 

And hapome-s flies hence. 

A stolen page, a recreant love, 

Ah, what is left to tell ! 
A broken heart, a weeping throng, 

And then — a funeral knell. 

A wounded heart, a home ber- :":. 

Xo daughter grace now lend 
Long, weary years of lonelin-. 

And thus the story ends. 



WOMANHOOD DEATH. 

But to our hearts with healing balm 
This thought brings memorv fair, 

The weary couch had long become 
"A Christ-held hammock of prayer," 

Which faithful friends, a loving band, 
Had twisted with promises bright, 

And angels fair with loving hands 
Had gathered and fastened tight. 



176 



VERSE. 



Her words of love are with us still : 
" So quiet I lie 'neath the eternal sky, 

" Biding the time when God, in His will, 

" Shall take me to dwell with Him on high." 

Though the beautiful form is laid away 
And our home is no more blest, 

Though joy had its hour and sorrow its day, 
We know that with Jesus is rest. 

Princeton, N. J. 




APPENDIX. 



Too Late to be Classified. 

Miss Sarah E. Tanner has been appointed Principal and 
instructor in English Literature and Industrial Drawing at 
the Colored Normal and Industrial School, Bordentown, 
N.J. 

Mrs. Mary H. Valodus, a native of Pennsylvania, trained 
in the Presbyterian Church, later active in missionary 
work in the A. U. M. E., was licensed to preach by Bishop 
Williams and has erected within the space of six years two 
churches, one at Rome, the other at Amsterdam, N. Y. 
Mrs. Valodus is now endeavoring to establish an Agricul- 
tural and Industrial School in Central, N. Y. 

Miss Ellen Nowell Ford, of Oakland, Cab, now of New 
York, has received a diploma certifying to the excellence 
of crayon work exhibited by her in the New York State 
exhibit at the World's Fair, Chicago, 1893. 

Mrs. M. A. McCurdy, of Rome, Ga., is editor of the 
Woman' s Woi'ld. 

Miss Fisher, of New Bedford, by obtaining a certain 
number of subscribers to the Woman 's Era, has been placed 
in the Boston Training School of Music. 

Miss Frances A. Davis and Mrs. Fanny Ridgel are labor- 
ing as missionaries in West Africa. 

(177) 



173 



APPENDIX. 



A number of young women have graduated as trained 
nurses from the Provident Hospital, Chicago, and it is 
also said that Johns Hopkins has twenty-four Afro-Ameri- 
can women graduates. 

Miss Lucy Thurman is National Superintendent of Tem- 
perance Work among the Afro-Americans. Mrs. F. E. W. 
Harper is National Organizer of the same work. Amanda 
Smith is World's Evangelist of the W. C. T. U. 




The Hazeley Family; or, Hard but Wholesome Les- 
sons. By Mrs. A. E. Johnson. 16 mo. 192 pages. 
Price, 90 cents. 

Clarence and Corinne ; or, God's Way. By the same 
Author. 121110. 187 pages. Price 90 cents. 



These two books contain very wholesome 
lessons and should be in every Sunday-School 
Library. 



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